Beyond Error Handling – Michael Feathers – Perth

Founder & Director of R7K Research & Conveyance, author of Working Effectively with Legacy Code

Michael Feathers is the Founder and Director of R7K Research & Conveyance, a company specializing in software and organization design. Prior to forming R7K, Michael was the Chief Scientist of Obtiva and a consultant with Object Mentor International. Over the past 20 years he has consulted with hundreds of organizations, supporting them with general software design issues, process change and code revitalization. A frequent presenter at national and international conferences, Michael is also the author of the book Working Effectively with Legacy Code (Prentice Hall, 2004).

Workshop Details

Topic: Beyond Error Handling : Using Design to Prevent Errors

It would be easy to say that error handling is a black art in software development but that implies that there is some secret stash of knowledge out there. The truth is that we tend to think of error handling as a “lesser concern.” If we know how to throw and catch exceptions, we feel that we are okay. The fact of the matter is ­ we aren’t okay. Error handling in applications is often a symptom of incomplete design. This course will focus on techniques you can use to systematically increase the robustness of code by rooting out potential errors and designing them away.


  • Survey of Error Handling Mechanisms
  • A Model for Robustness
  • Trusted Cores and Type Tunneling
  • Reducing Variation
  • Dealing with Concurrency and Distribution
  • Guidance for Exceptions/Null Objects/Options
  • Design Inversion