Last year Mickey Gousset asked me if I would like to be the Technical Editor for Professional Application Lifecycle Management with Visual Studio 2013. To be honest, I didn’t have the time, but said yes anyway. After all, life’s just about re-prioritizing, and this was an opportunity I didn’t want to miss.
I’ve done my fair share of reviewing technical content on the ALM Rangers program and I was intrigued to see if that experience would be similar to and help me with this adventure. I’ve worked closely with all the authors in the past and I guess they knew what they were getting themselves into as I’m often called Meneer (Mr) Pedantic when reviewing ALM Rangers content. For the most, that’s used as a compliment , but seriously, I’ve learnt a lot from the technical reviewers at Microsoft. My first submission came back with over 1200 edits. Seeing that changed the way I write and review content. (Thanks Patricia!). Being pedantic means being passionate about getting the right content out to the final audience.
I typically break my feedback into three categories.
- Tell the author what is just plain wrong. This is the easy part as there is usually clear factual evidence.
- Tell the author you don’t agree. This is the hardest part. It may be that you disagree with they way they have written something, or it may be that you disagree with content and have a different opinion. That’s just it though, it’s an opinion. You then need to validate that opinion and try to influence the author into either taking your advice and making a change, or getting them to provide evidence that their initial content is better. There’s nothing wrong with the latter, in fact the biggest potential for learning is by having a difference in opinion and working through each argument.
- Tell the author where they have done particularly well. I think this is very important. Often when there is an area that you don’t think is written well, you can point the author to another area where they have done a great job. Sometimes though you read a section and it completely changes your understanding of something, and I think the author should be made aware of the great work.
The schedule for getting this book out was tight but the whole process was very well managed. I’d like to thank Tom Dinse at Wrox for making sure that I had everything I needed and handling the whole process. It’s incredible how many people and effort is involved in producing a book. That page that takes you a minute or two to read has had at least 2-3 hours worth of time spent on it by a whole team of people!
To the authors, congrats guys, I think you’ve put out a great piece of work and it remains the go-to book for ALM with Visual Studio. Thanks also for your kind words in the book:
- Mickey Gousset – “Mike Fourie, I just don’t know what to say. You are the most amazing technical editor I have had. You have the ability to point out all the things I missed, without making me look bad. And your depth of knowledge is astounding.”
- Martin Hinshelwood – “Mike Fourie for taking it easy with the technical editing.” (taking it easy? ha ha Martin… thanks for taking on all my corrections )
- Brian Randell – “To our technical editor Mike Fourie, you continue to amaze me with your work ethic and I know this book is 100 times better due to your keen eye.”
So is this book worth buying? I think it is. If you take a look at the table of contents listed below you’ll see that it covers pretty much every part of ALM that you can do with Visual Studio. The level of detail in the chapters is also enough to get you off to a good start and understanding of a particular area. If you have the 2012 edition, I think there is enough new content to warrant getting this edition. Oh, btw, I’m not on commission, I really do think this book is worth getting .
Full chapter listing…
CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION TO APPLICATION LIFECYCLE MANAGEMENT WITH VISUAL STUDIO 2013 1
CHAPTER 2: INTRODUCTION TO TEAM FOUNDATION SERVER 11
CHAPTER 3: USING CENTRALIZED TEAM FOUNDATION VERSION CONTROL 37
CHAPTER 4: DISTRIBUTED VERSION CONTROL WITH GIT AND TEAM FOUNDATION SERVER 77
CHAPTER 5: TEAM FOUNDATION BUILD 93
CHAPTER 6: RELEASE MANAGEMENT 127
CHAPTER 7: COMMON TEAM FOUNDATION SERVER CUSTOMIZATIONS 153
CHAPTER 8: INTRODUCTION TO BUILDING THE RIGHT SOFTWARE 167
CHAPTER 9: STORYBOARDING 177
CHAPTER 10: CAPTURING STAKEHOLDER FEEDBACK 193
CHAPTER 11: INTRODUCTION TO PROJECT MANAGEMENT 203
CHAPTER 12: AGILE PLANNING AND TRACKING 233
CHAPTER 13: USING REPORTS, PORTALS, AND DASHBOARDS 257
CHAPTER 14: INTRODUCTION TO SOFTWARE ARCHITECTURE 277
CHAPTER 15: TOP-DOWN DESIGN WITH USE CASE, ACTIVITY, SEQUENCE, COMPONENT, AND CLASS DIAGRAMS 289
CHAPTER 16: ANALYZING APPLICATIONS USING ARCHITECTURE EXPLORER, DEPENDENCY GRAPHS, AND CODE MAPS 317
CHAPTER 17: USING LAYER DIAGRAMS TO MODEL AND ENFORCE APPLICATION ARCHITECTURE 343
CHAPTER 18: INTRODUCTION TO SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT 357
CHAPTER 19: UNIT TESTING 369
CHAPTER 20: CODE ANALYSIS, CODE METRICS, CODE CLONE ANALYSIS, AND CODELENS 397
CHAPTER 21: PROFILING AND PERFORMANCE 425
CHAPTER 22: DEBUGGING WITH INTELLITRACE 465
CHAPTER 23: INTRODUCTION TO SOFTWARE TESTING 489
CHAPTER 24: MANUAL TESTING 505
CHAPTER 25: CODED USER INTERFACE TESTING 537
CHAPTER 26: WEB PERFORMANCE AND LOAD TESTING 563
CHAPTER 27: LAB MANAGEMENT 609
Happy reading… Mike