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Real Life Debugged » Book Info & Publicity

Tag-Archive for ◊ Book Info & Publicity ◊

Thanks to my publisher, Elsevier/Newnes, the first chapter of the Phone on Fire Technical Mysteries is available online! I am including a link to it here, and also to the Elsevier website.

Excerpt from Chapter 1:

It was an odd-looking line of code, awkward in its form and syntax, dovetailed between well-formatted lines that marched up his computer screen. The pleasant left-and-right rhythm of indentation was marred by this single line, positioned brazenly flush with the left margin.

Not appropriate at all.

It was the offending line’s placement that first caught his attention, as if it had been cut-and-pasted by mistake. Closer inspection added to his unease. The original author of this code was not the author of this line - a hack interloper had destroyed the beauty of this software. Oscar raked a hand through his hair as he pulled his focus away from the individual characters and syntax and let awareness of the code’s function flood his brain.

It was a command to store a block of data into memory.

He scanned the comment section of the function and found no reference to the change. He wasn’t surprised; someone writing sloppy code generally didn’t pause to add comments.

But could this line be the source of the emergency, the reason why he’d been summoned back to work at 10 p.m. last night? And then spent the day alternately hunched over a lab computer and being dragged into various managers’ offices to estimate when he could fix a bug that he hadn’t yet had time to understand?

Three days before the final hardware and software were to be finished and delivered to manufacturing, the display on the Friend-Finder Communicator device suddenly turned red.

For no apparent reason.

Red.

Find the entire chapter here - with my shameless permission to link to it as well!:

Chapter 1) The Case of the Irate Customer - Debugging Other People’s Code, Fast!

This is a shout out to Jason Andrews from Cadence who mentioned the value of embedded systems, debugging, visualization and verification as cornerstones in technology going forward. Everything seems to be tied to everything else, and we all need to get our heads out of the cubbyholes (aka cubicles) and take a look at better and more comprehensive ways to solve problems.

Jason also gave a nice plug to If I Only Changed the Software, Why is the Phone on Fire?, and for that I thank him. He mentioned that we share a common publisher, Elsevier/Newnes with his book Co-verification of Hardware and Software for ARM SoC Design. With hardware and software merging closer and closer together as time goes on, we need to be more cognizant of the challenges of verification. We can’t design, develop, debug, or test in a vacuum any longer. Check it out.

This new book manages the unthinkable - it conveys crucial technical information to engineers without boring them to tears! …

Unique format casts the reader as a technical detective by presenting a new mystery in every chapter. Not another dry technical book! It’s conversational tone and intriguing quandaries draw the reader into the action, while teaching crucial debugging skills.

Read the rest of the review here.