The Mythical Man-Month: Essays On Software Engineering, Anniversary Edition

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The Mythical Man-Month: Essays On Software Engineering, Anniversary Edition

by Frederick P. Brooks

Pearson Education | August 2, 1995 | Trade Paperback

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Few books on software project management have been as influential and timeless as The Mythical Man-Month. With a blend of software engineering facts and thought-provoking opinions, Fred Brooks offers insight for anyone managing complex projects. These essays draw from his experience as project manager for the IBM System/360 computer family and then for OS/360, its massive software system. Now, 20 years after the initial publication of his book, Brooks has revisited his original ideas and added new thoughts and advice, both for readers already familiar with his work and for readers discovering it for the first time.

 

The added chapters contain (1) a crisp condensation of all the propositions asserted in the original book, including Brooks' central argument in The Mythical Man-Month: that large programming projects suffer management problems different from small ones due to the division of labor; that the conceptual integrity of the product is therefore critical; and that it is difficult but possible to achieve this unity; (2) Brooks' view of these propositions a generation later; (3) a reprint of his classic 1986 paper "No Silver Bullet"; and (4) today's thoughts on the 1986 assertion, "There will be no silver bullet within ten years."

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 336 Pages, 5.91 × 9.06 × 0.39 in

Published: August 2, 1995

Publisher: Pearson Education

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0201835959

ISBN - 13: 9780201835953

Found in: General Computing

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– More About This Product –

The Mythical Man-Month: Essays On Software Engineering, Anniversary Edition

The Mythical Man-Month: Essays On Software Engineering, Anniversary Edition

by Frederick P. Brooks

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 336 Pages, 5.91 × 9.06 × 0.39 in

Published: August 2, 1995

Publisher: Pearson Education

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0201835959

ISBN - 13: 9780201835953

Read from the Book

To my surprise and delight, The Mythical Man-Month continues to be popular after twenty years. Over 250,000 copies are in print. People often ask which of the opinions and recommendations set forth in 1975 I still hold, and which have changed, and how. Whereas I have from time to time addressed that question in lectures, I have long wanted to essay it in writing. Peter Gordon, now a Publishing Partner at Addison-Wesley, has been working with me patiently and helpfully since 1980. He proposed that we prepare an Anniversary Edition. We decided not to revise the original, but to reprint it untouched (except for trivial corrections) and to augment it with more current thoughts. Chapter 16 reprints "No Silver Bullet: Essence and Accidents of Software Engineering," a 1986 IFIPS paper that grew out of my experience chairing a Defense Science Board study on military software. My co-authors of that study, and our executive secretary, Robert L. Patrick, were invaluable in bringing me back into touch with real-world large software projects. The paper was reprinted in 1987 in the IEEE Computer magazine, which gave it wide circulation. "No Silver Bullet" proved provocative. It predicted that a decade would not see any programming technique which would by itself bring an order-of-magnitude improvement in software productivity. The decade has a year to run; my prediction seems safe. "NSB" has stimulated more and more spirited discussion in the literature than has The Mythical Man-Month . Ch
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Table of Contents



 1. The Tar Pit.


 2. The Mythical Man-Month.


 3. The Surgical Team.


 4. Aristocracy, Democracy, and System Design.


 5. The Second-System Effect.


 6. Passing the Word.


 7. Why Did the Tower of Babel Fail?


 8. Calling the Shot.


 9. Ten Pounds in a Five-Pound Sack.


10. The Documentary Hypothesis.


11. Plan to Throw One Away.


12. Sharp Tools.


13. The Whole and the Parts.


14. Hatching a Castrophe.


15. The Other Face.


16. No Silver Bullet -- Essence and Accident.


17. "No Silver Bullet" ReFired.


18. Propositions of The Mythical Man-Month: True or False?


19. The Mythical Man-Month After 20 Years.


Epilogue.


Notes and references.


Index. 0201835959T04062001

From the Publisher

Few books on software project management have been as influential and timeless as The Mythical Man-Month. With a blend of software engineering facts and thought-provoking opinions, Fred Brooks offers insight for anyone managing complex projects. These essays draw from his experience as project manager for the IBM System/360 computer family and then for OS/360, its massive software system. Now, 20 years after the initial publication of his book, Brooks has revisited his original ideas and added new thoughts and advice, both for readers already familiar with his work and for readers discovering it for the first time.

 

The added chapters contain (1) a crisp condensation of all the propositions asserted in the original book, including Brooks' central argument in The Mythical Man-Month: that large programming projects suffer management problems different from small ones due to the division of labor; that the conceptual integrity of the product is therefore critical; and that it is difficult but possible to achieve this unity; (2) Brooks' view of these propositions a generation later; (3) a reprint of his classic 1986 paper "No Silver Bullet"; and (4) today's thoughts on the 1986 assertion, "There will be no silver bullet within ten years."

From the Jacket

Few books on software project management have been as influential and timeless as The Mythical Man-Month. With a blend of software engineering facts and thought-provoking opinions, Fred Brooks offers insight for anyone managing complex projects. These essays draw from his experience as project manager for the IBM System/360 computer family and then for OS/360, its massive software system. Now, 20 years after the initial publication of his book, Brooks has revisited his original ideas and added new thoughts and advice, both for readers already familiar with his work and for readers discovering it for the first time.

 

The added chapters contain (1) a crisp condensation of all the propositions asserted in the original book, including Brooks' central argument in The Mythical Man-Month: that large programming projects suffer management problems different from small ones due to the division of labor; that the conceptual integrity of the product is therefore critical; and that it is difficult but possible to achieve this unity; (2) Brooks' view of these propositions a generation later; (3) a reprint of his classic 1986 paper "No Silver Bullet"; and (4) today's thoughts on the 1986 assertion, "There will be no silver bullet within ten years."

About the Author

Frederick P. Brooks, Jr., was born in 1931 in Durham, NC. He received an A.B. summa cum laude in physics from Duke and a Ph.D. in computer science from Harvard, under Howard Aiken, the inventor of the early Harvard computers. At Chapel Hill, Dr. Brooks founded the Department of Computer Science and chaired it from 1964 through 1984. He has served on the National Science Board and the Defense Science Board. His current teaching and research is in computer architecture, molecular graphics, and virtual environments. He joined IBM, working in Poughkeepsie and Yorktown, NY, 1956-1965. He is best known as the "father of the IBM System/360", having served as project manager for its development and later as manager of the Operating System/360 software project during its design phase. For this work he, Bob Evans, and Erick Block were awarded and received a National Medal of Technology in 1985. Dr. Brooks and Dura Sweeney in 1957 patented a Stretch interrupt system for the IBM Stretch computer that introduced most features of today's interrupt systems. He coined the term computer architecture . His System/360 team first achieved strict compatibility, upward and downward, in a computer family. His early concern for word processing led to his selection of the 8-bit byte and the lowercase alphabet for the System/360, engineering of many new 8-bit input/output devices, and providing a character-string datatype in PL/I. In 1964 he founded the Computer Science Department at the Universit
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From the Author

To my surprise and delight, The Mythical ManMonth continues to be popular after twenty years. Over 250,000 copies are in print. People often ask which of the opinions and recommendations set forth in 1975 I still hold, and which have changed, and how. Whereas I have from time to time addressed that question in lectures, I have long wanted to essay it in writing. Peter Gordon, now a Publishing Partner at AddisonWesley, has been working with me patiently and helpfully since 1980. He proposed that we prepare an Anniversary Edition. We decided not to revise the original, but to reprint it untouched (except for trivial corrections) and to augment it with more current thoughts. Chapter 16 reprints "No Silver Bullet: Essence and Accidents of Software Engineering," a 1986 IFIPS paper that grew out of my experience chairing a Defense Science Board study on military software. My coauthors of that study, and our executive secretary, Robert L. Patrick, were invaluable in bringing me back into touch with realworld large software projects. The paper was reprinted in 1987 in the IEEE Computer magazine, which gave it wide circulation. "No Silver Bullet" proved provocative. It predicted that a decade would not see any programming technique which would by itself bring an orderofmagnitude improvement in software productivity. The decade has a year to run; my prediction seems safe. "NSB" has stimulated more and more spirited discussion in the literature than has The Mythical ManMonth . Chapter 1
read more read less

From Our Editors

No book on software project management has been so influential and so timeless as The Mythical Man-Month. Now 20 years after the publication of his book, Frederick P. Brooks, Jr. (best known as the "father of the IBM System 360") revisits his original ideas and develops new thoughts and advice both for readers familiar with his work and for readers discovering it for the first time
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