Feeds

Framework Design Guidelines

Conventions, Idioms and Patterns for Reusable .NET Libraries

High performance access to file storage

Book review While Framework Design Guidelines: Conventions, Idioms and Patterns for Reusable.NET Libraries hardly rolls off the tongue, it has the obvious virtue of faithfully describing the contents. And while the subject of coding and design guidelines might not get the juices running in the same way as a tome on the latest scripting language or a fancy new web technology, it’s also true that a solid grasp of the subject is likely to be of more long term value to a developer.

Framework Design Guidelines book cover By frameworks the authors mean collections of components which are designed for reuse – in other words libraries, middleware components, toolkits and the like. In contrast to standalone applications, these frameworks are defined by their APIs, the public interface through which other developers can make use of them. And the prime example the authors refer to is, of course, Microsoft’s .NET Framework; as they make clear, the guidelines in this book are those developed, tested and refined by the development of .NET.

The book covers both design principles and more mundane issues such as coding standards, naming conventions and so on. The first couple of chapters focus on design and philosophy, describing both the desirable attributes of a well-designed framework (simplicity, consistency, built with evolution in mind), and some fundamental guiding principles (layered architecture, self-documenting object models). Design principles are also revisited in a later chapter on common design patterns, such as the use of factory methods for object creation.

The nuts and bolts of coding are not neglected. Naming guidelines include capitalisation rules, names for classes, interfaces, structs, assemblies, name spaces, and much more. On first sight there appear to be endless layers of detail – how hard can it be to come up with rules on how to capitalise identifiers? However, it’s a horrible fact of life that depending on common sense and good luck just isn’t enough. And once an API has been published, all kinds of inconsistencies and exceptions become glaringly obvious to your users, who’ll take no end of pleasure in pointing them out.

Of course, this isn’t the first book to cover this sort of ground. Steve McConnell’s excellent ”Code Complete” (reviewed here), has plenty to say on coding and naming standards. And Joshua Bloch’s ”Effective Java” (reviewed here), covers design object oriented design principles. Interestingly, both books are name checked and are clear influences. While the .NET focus is evident, it has to be said that the principles and guidelines are independent of language and, to a very large extent, independent of platform. So, not only is this a book that applies to all of the .NET languages rather than just C#, most of it makes good sense for Java, Python and the rest.

Given the subject matter, the writing’s on the dry side. But the solid technical content is leavened with comments and asides from a number of experienced developers and architects.

Framework Design Guidelines: Conventions, Idioms and Patterns for Reusable .NET Libraries

Verdict: All in all, this is an impressive and useful book that is easy to recommend.

Author: Krzysztof Cwalina and Brad Abrams

Publisher: Addison Wesley

ISBN: 0321246756

Media: Book

List Price: £28.99

Reg price: £23.19

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders
Veep testifies for Samsung during Apple patent trial
Windows 8.1, which you probably haven't upgraded to yet, ALREADY OBSOLETE
Pre-Update versions of new Windows version will no longer support patches
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Half of Twitter's 'active users' are SILENT STALKERS
Nearly 50% have NEVER tweeted a word
Batten down the hatches, Ubuntu 14.04 LTS due in TWO DAYS
Admins dab straining server brows in advance of Trusty Tahr's long-term support landing
Windows XP still has 27 per cent market share on its deathbed
Windows 7 making some gains on XP Death Day
Internet-of-stuff startup dumps NoSQL for ... SQL?
NoSQL taste great at first but lacks proper nutrients, says startup cloud whiz
US taxman blows Win XP deadline, must now spend millions on custom support
Gov't IT likened to 'a Model T with a lot of things on top of it'
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.