Smart Bear Software – Peer Code Review Book

A while back I promised to read and review Smart Bear Software’s book “Best Kept Secrets of Peer Code Review” – I read the book right away, but haven’t yet made the time to actually write up a review – so let me give a brief review now: I like it.

The book is easy to read, with a relatively conversational style of writing. It covers “old school code review” – big formal affairs – and introduces lightweight code reviews as well. It also presents results from a number of code review studies (including Smart Bear’s Cisco study which they call “the largest case study of peer code review”) which show that code reviews of any form are a good idea.

The book is a good summary of code reviews, and Smart Bear’s brand of lightweight peer code review sounds like a great way to implement them.

Blog, Cringely

Robert Cringely’s “I, Cringely” site has changed from a non-interactive plain ol’ web page to a blog format.

I can’t say that I care too much about the comments, but I do like the new page design.

Mostly I’m looking forward to more NerdTV interviews: “NerdTV is essentially Charlie Rose for geeks – a one-hour interview show with a single guest from the world of technology. Guests like Sun Microsystems co-founder Bill Joy or Apple computer inventor Steve Wozniak are household names if your household is nerdy enough, but as historical figures and geniuses in their own right, they have plenty to say to ALL of us.”

Cringely does the best interviews I’ve heard – he has awesome guests (that you frequently can’t hear elsewhere) and asks great questions. The production of the first season of NerdTV was hit or miss – some episodes had barely audible audio – but I’m guessing that will be cleaned up a lot in Season Two.

A fantastic new graphic design company

Our family friend Anne Golliher just started a new graphic design company based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. It’s called “Gaddere,” and it is incredible. If you’re looking for wedding invitations, baby or wedding shower invitations, or invitations for any other celebration worth announcing, then you can’t go wrong talking to Anne.

Even if you’re not in the market, if you like great design you should take a look at the Gaddere designs portfolio to see some excellent examples of Anne’s work.

Oh yeah, and her husband Joe is the guy who told me about home roasting coffee beans, so apparently she married well too. 🙂

Edit: December 14, 2007, updated with new links.

Instant Coffee == Instant Yuck

I’m out of roasted coffee beans, bummer.

My caffeine habit won’t let me go without, so after scrounging around the kitchen I found some Folger’s instant. “Eh, how bad could it be?” I figured. Bad. Very Bad. Even heavily doctored Bad. After brushing my teeth twice I still can’t get the taste out of my mouth Bad.

Fortunately I have a home coffee roaster, aka an air popcorn popper, and some green coffee beans. 5 minutes of roasting later I have some incredibly fresh roasted coffee beans and a front porch full of chaff. (Chaff is the light, airy shell of the green coffee bean that comes off the bean while roasting and floats everywhere. It’s also one of the reasons that air popper roasting should be done outside.)

I learned about roasting your own coffee beans from a friend, who recommended Sweet Maria’s web site. They have a ton of good info about home roasting. It’s cheaper and better than a trip to Starbucks, and also a lot more fun!