Sebastopol, CA--Extreme Programming (XP) methods have been accepted quickly because its core practices--particularly code sharing, test-first development, and continuous integration--resonated with software developers everywhere. Oddly enough, although most developers turn to XP methods in order to code real, hands-on, and extensible projects quickly (think: "code comes first"), most books on Extreme Programming focus on theory.
Not O'Reilly's just-released Java Extreme Programming Cookbook (Burke & Coyner, $34.95 US).
With a little over 100 "recipes" for getting down to business and actually using XP, the "Java Extreme Programming Cookbook" doesn't try to "sell" you on XP; it succinctly documents the most important features of popular open source tools for XP in Java--including Ant, Junit, HttpUnit, Cactus, Tomcat, Xdoclet--and then digs right in, implementing the tools in real-world, rapid-development environments.
The wealth of open source tools for Java XP is simultaneously a boon to the parsimonious developer, and one of the biggest challenges he or she faces. Sorting through the wide variety of tools available from various sources and figuring out how to use them effectively can be tedious and time-consuming. "Developers need to know how and when to use a specific open source tool and how to integrate that tool (or concept, as in Mock Objects) into their development environment," explains coauthor Brian Coyner. The recipes in "Java Extreme Programming Cookbook" showcase how to use the most important features of these XP tools. Many of these tools are geared towards unit testing, while others are invaluable for continuous integration. With these examples, you can select the most effective tools to accomplish your goals, then implement them in a cohesive development environment.
Each "recipe" offers solutions that help put an extreme programming environment together: they provide code for automating the build process and testing. Although the time saved using any one of these solutions will more than pay for the book, "Java Extreme Programming Cookbook" is more than just a collection of cut-and-paste code. Each "recipe" also includes explanations of how and why the approach works, so you can adapt the techniques to similar situations. Throughout, the book reflects an implicit assumption that refactoring, unit testing, and continuous integration are the best ways to develop high quality software.
If you want to set up a test-driven development environment that allows you to focus on writing testable code--now--Burke and Coyner's new book will prove invaluable.
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