Review of the book “The Mythical Man-Month” by Frederick Brooks

    It seems I got into the taste of writing reviews. Earlier, I published a review of Walter Isaacsson’s book “Steve Jobs” . Now I decided to share my opinion about another book popular in it circles. We will talk about the book of Frederick Brooks "Mythical man-month, or how to create software systems."

    The cornerstone in the foundation of the profession of project manager.

    Almost any loud epithet here will not be superfluous. The book as a symbol of the era. The name and surname of the author are inscribed in the history of the development of information technologies in archin letters. The pages of Mythical Man-Month not only contain fundamental knowledge on project management, but also summarizes almost half a century of experience in application development in a team. Brooks was one of the first to be swept by a peculiar gold rush. Although he warned that there was no “silver bullet,” many followed in his footsteps in search of Eldorado.

    Time-tested concept. The phenomenal increase in productivity in the software development process is nothing more than a myth. Scary honesty in general. Nevertheless, years go by, and researchers continue to “break their spears” on this subject. Brooks assigns the main role in the software development process to good designers. After reading, the leaders involuntarily reflect: is it necessary to save on analysts? However, this is not the main goal of Brooks' research. “Mythical man-month”, if you like, aims to consolidate the status of creativity for application development. The task is ambitious, but it seems Brooks really managed to fulfill it. The latest scientific and technological revolution is proof of this.

    Like it or not, only an American could write such a book. The author is open to dialogue. The last chapters, supplementing the first edition, in fact, contain all conceivable and inconceivable criticism of Brooks law. Without cuts. I must say that the law withstands it, and not without brilliance. The author gives comments on each attack in his direction, honestly agreeing with opponents or arguing firmly with them. The "mythical man-month" remains unshakable, like Stonehenge or the Egyptian pyramids.

    Methodologies are changing, new programming languages ​​appear, hardware productivity is growing, but the book continues to be relevant. What's the secret? It's simple: Brooks found the right point of view. Software development is not so much about technologies and tools, but about people. The phenomenal growth of IT technologies has created a lot of illusions, forcing project managers to forget about the most important thing - their employees. Brooks brought them back to sinful earth.

    Why and to whom to read?
    It is easier to answer the question who should not read this book. Do not read despots to continue to poison teams. Do not read tantrums to continue to burn nerves and resources. Do not read to beginners to remain promising.

    “It takes nine months to give birth to a baby, regardless of how many women are involved in this task.”

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