Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Challenging software development blogs

I am not hugely keen on top 100 lists or similar trite listings of people, blogs or posts, however sometimes I notice that I have too many tabs open in Chrome (hello, 58?!) and need to itemise some of them. Many of the ones I keep open are blogs that challenge me enough that I want to read them frequently (I know ... I should be using an RSS reader, so call me old-school! ;).

I think these are some of the more challenging blogs* out there with regards to software development - read these and you will find your brain, assumptions and dealer-held beliefs under high-voltage attack.

* OK, so I am going to miss a couple of fantastic ones - what is important is that you check out the ones I do mention!


Joel on Software (visit)

Joel Spolsky of Fog Creek Software and Stack Overflow fame has had one of the most well-read and discussed software development blogs on the planet for years now. He is an original thinker in a market filled with duplicates, he also has a deep commitment to giving his developers great office space.

The Software Simplist (visit)

Udi Dahan's blog specialises in Service Oriented Architecture (SOA), but I read him for his refreshing view of domain-driven design (DDD). I got a new insight into DDD from his DDD & Many to Many Object Relational Mapping post.

Scott Bellware's Blog (visit)

Scott Bellware is probably the most hated/respected .NET rebel on the planet. His abrasive manner and obvious chip on his shoulder with Microsoft and the ALT.NET mainstream put some people off, but he has a deep insight into what Agile development is meant to be all about and a straightforward manner in sharing what he knows. He also seems pretty sure that most developers are learning impaired. A good example of his (more positive) thinking is Productivity: It Comes from Software Design Rather than Software Tools.

Noop.nl (visit)

Jurgen Appelo's software development management blog has some of the most pragmatic and interesting advice available for functional managers of developers. His company's situation is similar to Elcom's, so I appreciate his honest and smart insight into how to make Scrum work with large teams working on many disparate projects. He has useful posts like How to Handle Many Simultaneous Projects which apply Lean/Scrum principles to the real world of custom software development.

You'd think with all my video game experience that I'd be more prepared for this (visit)

Jason Yip from ThoughtWorks focuses his blog on lean manufacturing principles and how they apply to the reality of software development. A challenging thinker and opinionated professional, he manages to stay as radical as someone like Scott Bellware with a more pleasant demeanour. A typical (longer) post from him would be No matter how many times you say it, we still don't need a QA on the team.

Greg Young's Blog (visit)

Greg Young is a Microsoft MVP who has some very interesting opinions on domain-driven design, namely that the domain model is only there for write operations. Check out his DDDD: Master-Detail Question post for more details on this and how he uses a thin DTO layer to power his read-only UI pages.

Chad Myers' Blog (visit)

I first found out about Chad from a talk he and Jeremy Miller gave on Opinionated MVC (see videos here and here). Jeremy Miller developed StructureMap, which is a Dependency Injection/Inversion of Control framework. Chad is also the driving force behind the Virtual ALT.NET (VAN) group which has helped developers connect from places as far afield as Texas and Australia!

James Bach's Blog (visit)

Interested in software testing? Then you need to quickly head over to James Bach's blog and check out his controversial, but smart and honest posts on the topic. To understand where he is coming from, check out his Schools of Testing ... Here to Stay blog post.

So ...

Who did I miss? Leave a comment and let me know!

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