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New Programmer's Survival Manual: Navigate Your Workplace, Cube Farm, or Startup


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New Programmer's Survival Manual


It’s your first day on the new job. You’ve got the programming chops, you’re up on the latest tech, you’re sitting at your workstation… now what? New Programmer’s Survival Manual gives your career the jolt it needs to get going: essential industry skills to help you apply your raw programming talent and make a name for yourself. It’s a no-holds-barred look at what really goes on in the office—and how to not only survive, but thrive in your first job and beyond.

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About this Title

Pages: 256
Published: 2011-12-01
Release: P2.0 (2015-10-23)
ISBN: 978-1-93435-681-4

Programming at industry level requires new skills—you’ll build programs that dwarf anything you’ve done on your own. This book introduces you to practices for working on large-scale, long-lived programs at a professional level of quality. You’ll find out how to work efficiently with your current tools, and discover essential new tools.

But the tools are only part of the story; you’ve got to get street-smart too. Succeeding in the corporate working environment requires its own savvy. You’ll learn how to navigate the office, work with your teammates, and how to deal with other people outside of your department. You’ll understand where you fit into the big picture and how you contribute to the company’s success. You’ll also get a candid look at the tougher aspects of the job: stress, conflict, and office politics.

Finally, programming is a job you can do for the long haul. This book helps you look ahead to the years to come, and your future opportunities—either as a programmer or in another role you grow into.

There’s nothing quite like the satisfaction of shipping a product and knowing, “I built that.” Whether you work on embedded systems or web-based applications, in trendy technologies or legacy systems, this book helps you get from raw skill to an accomplished professional.

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Contents & Extracts

Full Table of Contents


  • Professional Programming
    • Program For Production
      • Tip 1. Beat Up Your Code
      • Tip 2. Insist on Correctness
      • Tip 3. Design with Tests
      • Tip 4. Tame Complexity
      • Tip 5. Fail Gracefully excerpt
      • Tip 6. Be Stylish
      • Tip 7. Improve Legacy Code
      • Tip 8. Review Code Early and Often
    • Get Your Tools in Order
      • Tip 9. Optimize Your Environment
      • Tip 10. Speak Your Language Fluently
      • Tip 11. Know Your Platform
      • Tip 12. Automate Your Pain Away
      • Tip 13. Control Time (and Timelines)
      • Tip 14. Use The Source, Luke
  • People Skills
    • Manage Thy Self
      • Tip 15. Find a Mentor
      • Tip 16. Own the Image You Project
      • Tip 17. Be Visible excerpt
      • Tip 18. Ace Your Performance Review
      • Tip 19. Manage Your Stress
      • Tip 20. Treat Your Body Right
    • Teamwork
      • Tip 21. Grok Personality Types
      • Tip 22. Connect the Dots
      • Tip 23. Work Together excerpt
      • Tip 24. Meet Effectively
  • The Corporate World
    • Inside the Company
      • Tip 25. Know Your Peeps
      • Tip 26. Know Your (Corporate) Anatomy
    • Mind Your Business
      • Tip 27. Get with the Project
      • Tip 28. Appreciate the Circle of (a Product’s) Life
      • Tip 29. Put Yourself in the Company’s Shoes
      • Tip 30. Identify Corporate Antipatterns
  • Looking Forward
    • Kaizen
      • Tip 31. Mind Your Head excerpt
      • Tip 32. Never Stop Learning
      • Tip 33. Find Your Place


Josh Carter is a professional programmer with more than 15 years of experience, both in programming and engineering management. He has a passion for programming and keeping on the leading edge of technology, but it’s balanced by the Steve Jobs mantra, “Real artists ship.” These days he’s equally passionate about helping the next generation of programmers make their own mark in industry.