The Pragmatic Programmer

1999 non-fiction book by Andrew Hunt and David Thomas / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Pragmatic Programmer: From Journeyman to Master is a book about computer programming and software engineering, written by Andrew Hunt and David Thomas and published in October 1999.[1][2][3] It is used as a textbook in related university courses.[4] It was the first in a series of books under the label The Pragmatic Bookshelf. A second edition, The Pragmatic Programmer: Your Journey to Mastery was released in 2019 for the book's 20th anniversary, with major revisions and new material which reflects new technology and other changes in the software engineering industry over the last twenty years.

Quick facts: Authors, Country, Subjects, Published, Pages...
The Pragmatic Programmer
  • Andrew Hunt
  • David Thomas
CountryUnited States
SubjectsEducation, computer programming
Published1999 by Addison-Wesley

The book does not present a systematic theory, but rather a collection of tips to improve the development process in a pragmatic way. The main qualities of what the authors refer to as a pragmatic programmer are being an early adopter, to have fast adaptation, inquisitiveness and critical thinking, realism, and being a jack-of-all-trades.[5]

The book uses analogies and short stories to present development methodologies and caveats, for example the broken windows theory, the story of the stone soup, or the boiling frog.[6] Some concepts were named or popularized in the book, such as DRY (or Don't Repeat Yourself) and rubber duck debugging, a method of debugging whose name is a reference to a story in the book.[7]

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