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Well O'reilly recently did put out "Making Software What Really Works, and Why We Believe It" http://shop.oreilly.com/product/9780596808303.do which is a collection of essays backed by not lore, but actual scientific studies about software development. A few topics touched on in the book: • How much time should you spend on a code review in one sitting? • Is there a limit to the number of LOC you can accurately review? • How much better/faster is pair programming? • Does using design patterns make software better? • Does test-driven development work as well as they say? • How much do languages matter? • What matters more: How far apart people are geographically, or how far apart they are in the org chart? • Can code metrics predict the number of bugs in a piece of software? • Which is better: offices or cubes? • Does code coverage predict the number of bugs that will be later found? • What is right/wrong with our bug tracking systems today? • Why are graduates so lost in their first job?

If you haven't yet run across this book I highly recommend you check it out. At least for me it really meshed with my own quest to further delve into the mix of social and technical issues around software development. For more info on the book besides amazon reviews etc I also wrote up a blog entry last year which goes into more depth on the book http://benjamin-meyer.blogspot.com/2011/02/book-review-makin...

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