Coding style is a set of guidelines that helps readability and understanding of the source code.

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Style for multiline concatenation in PHP

Which style do you think is best (and why)? The single line: // single line $lok = sprintln("Everything changed when the fire nation attacked") . $cactusJuice . $numElements . $sharpnessLevel; ...
4
votes
1answer
132 views

Why is the use of JavaScript in HREF attributes discouraged?

Disclaimer: I came to Programmers.SE to ask this question because I understand this is the place to ask this type of question, and not necessarily stackoverflow. If I am wrong, please close the ...
3
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5answers
1k views

What is “using namespace” pollution?

I was looking at the google coding guide [here] and they do not recommend that one use the using namespace ornamespace:function` - if I did not misinterpret it. Does this apply to std as well? ...
1
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1answer
699 views

How to break these long C++ lines in a neat way? [closed]

I'm on my first bigger C++ project and find that I have some really long lines. My goal is to break them to 79 columns, but I do not really know how to do this in a neat way. Are there some guidelines ...
0
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0answers
38 views

type name for state machine state (as opposed to other state variables)

I need to create a typedef for a state machine state, e.g. enum ToasterStateMachineState { TSM_READY, TSM_TOASTING, TSM_DONE }; But ToasterStateMachineState seems verbose and redundant; is ...
5
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3answers
708 views

Style for control flow with validation checks

I find myself writing a lot of code like this: int myFunction(Person* person) { int personIsValid = !(person==NULL); if (personIsValid) { // do some stuff; might be lengthy int myresult ...
56
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15answers
12k views

What's wrong with circular references?

I was involved in a programming discussion today where I made some statements that basically assumed axiomatically that circular references (between modules, classes, whatever) are generally bad. ...
-1
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7answers
264 views

Single line comments for multiple indented lines of code [closed]

After many years of coding, trying various programming styles, weeding out unreadable or impractical stuff, I still can't figure out one thing: what is the best way to single-line-comment multiple ...
3
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1answer
102 views

Should a class explicitly implement interface if its superclass also implements it?

Given an interface interface I { one(); two(); } An abstract base class partially implementing I abstract class A { @Override void one() { //something } } And lastly ...
5
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4answers
2k views

Should you ever use private on fields and methods in C#?

I am somewhat new to C# and just found out that: in C# all of the fields and methods in a class are default private. Meaning that this: class MyClass { string myString } is the same as: class ...
7
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5answers
711 views

Coding style issue: Should we have functions which take a parameter, modify it, and then RETURN that parameter?

I'm having a bit of a debate with my friend over whether these two practices are merely two sides of the same coin, or whether one is genuinely better. We have a function which takes a parameter, ...
0
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2answers
82 views

Print Statements Inside Function Or Before Calling It? [closed]

I have a script which different people may use. I have print statements so people can follow along what the script is doing, and if it breaks where it went wrong, and if a certain step takes a long ...
2
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2answers
193 views

At what point should you collapse many parameters into (e.g.) struct to improve readability in function headers?

While making a struct creates some overhead at run-time, packaging a bunch of frequently-used-together variables can dramatically increase code readability. How do you balance the two? I was just ...
0
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0answers
76 views

Improving the speed of coding in Fortran [duplicate]

I've got about 1.5 years of experience in writing Fortran 2003 codes for scientific applications (duh), and I'm finding myself now in the situation in which I need to write working code as fast as ...
2
votes
3answers
405 views

Should one value simpler code over performance when returning multiple values?

I'm too often facing situations where I need to get several types of information from a method. I usually think long and hard to circumvent these situations but I'm thinking it's pointless work that ...
26
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11answers
2k views

Maintenance wise, is `else while` without intervening braces considered safe?

Is else while without intervening braces considered "safe" maintenance wise? Writing if-else code without braces like below... if (blah) foo(); else bar(); ...carries a risk because the ...
70
votes
20answers
12k views

How important is it to reduce the number of lines in code?

I am a Software developer who works on J2SE (core java). Often during our code reviews we are asked to reduce the number of lines in our code. It's not about removing redundant code, it's about ...
26
votes
4answers
18k views

Why is #include <iostream.h> bad?

I was reading another thread where a guy asked about C++ books for beginners, and one of the programmers answering wrote this: Some warnings: avoid all books that present an "hello world" stating ...
8
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7answers
305 views

How does a variable introduce state?

I was reading the "C++ Coding Standards" and this line was there: Variables introduce state, and you should have to deal with as little state as possible, with lifetimes as short as possible. ...
15
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16answers
1k views

Do else blocks increase code complexity? [closed]

Here is a very simplified example. This isn't necessarily a language-specific question, and I ask that you ignore the many other ways the function can be written, and changes that can be made to it.. ...
106
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17answers
22k views

Is there an excuse for short variable names?

This has become a large frustration with the codebase I'm currently working in; many of our variable names are short and undescriptive. I'm the only developer left on the project, and there isn't ...
6
votes
2answers
488 views

Which is a better pattern (coding style) for validating arguments - hurdle (barrier) or fence? [duplicate]

I don't know if there are any accepted names for these patterns (or anti-patterns), but I like to call them what I call them here. Actually, that would be Question 1: What are accepted names for these ...
2
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1answer
122 views

RefactorException: Good idea or bad idea?

When I'm doing large scale refactors I'm often commenting out the contents of methods and using NotImplementedExceptions for stuff that I still need to refactor. Problem is that this is interfering ...
0
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9answers
3k views

Line break before/after operator [closed]

While Sun's Java code convention suggests to put line break before the operator many other guidelines disagree with it. I do not see any obvious pros and cons, so are there advantages of using one of ...
0
votes
1answer
122 views

if else brackets on same line, best comment style? [closed]

I used to do this: // If the cat is black if ( $catColor == 'black' ) { ... } // Otherwise eat a taco else { ... } But I've more recently started to move toward this style of conditional ...
17
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12answers
2k views

Correct comment to put for boolean function arguments that are “false”?

From some open source projects, I gathered the following coding style void someFunction(bool forget); void ourFunction() { someFunction(false /* forget */); } I always have doubt about what ...
0
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3answers
420 views

Eliminate duplicate code in nested IFs without creating a function [duplicate]

Let's say we have two ifs that depend on each other: if var exists { if var is array { //Do stuff with var } else { //Resolve the problem } } else { //Resolve the ...
0
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3answers
208 views

Overloading Methods With Different Behavior - Style

I have a style question about overloading methods/constructors. I have a constructor which does something very simple, and then calls a method with some side effects. Sometimes however I don't want ...
0
votes
2answers
152 views

How to systematize tagging in code? [closed]

There are several almost standard tags used in comments: FIXME, TODO, BUGBUG. Which other tags do you use and for what? Are there any standards on using them, i.e. format (supplementing with date ...
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votes
7answers
347 views

Vector operations: vec1.dot(vec2) vs vec1 * vec2 vs dot(vec1, vec2) [closed]

What's your preferred way to implement/use vector operations? vec1.dot(vec2) allows to reuse vec1 but is hard to read for longer equations dot(vec1, vec2) A friend of mine prefers this as "dot" ...
0
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4answers
293 views

How can if (sscanf(buf, “%i”, &mode) != 1 || TRUE) be rewritten to if (TRUE)?

I got lost in the opening of this post on reddit. How can if (sscanf(buf, "%i", &mode) != 1 || TRUE) be rewritten to if (TRUE)? Does this assume that the sscanf never fails?
0
votes
1answer
126 views

Checking negative of a condition

What is the (slightly pejorative) term for checking the negative of a condition (rather than the positive which is often more readable): e.g. if(!someVar) { return null; } else { return ...
1
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2answers
142 views

Should I sacrifice code succintness to ensure the narrowest variable scope? [duplicate]

In many languages (e.g. both Perl and Java - which are the two languages I work most with) it is possible to narrow the scope of local variables by declaring them within a block. Although it adds ...
50
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6answers
24k views

Why is trailing whitespace a big deal?

Trailing whitespace is enough of a problem for programmers that editors like Emacs have special functions that highlight it or get rid of it automatically, and many coding standards require you to ...
55
votes
12answers
13k views

What is the ideal length of a method? [closed]

In object-oriented programming, there is no exact rule on the maximum length of a method , but I still found these two qutes somewhat contradicting each other, so I would like to hear what you think. ...
2
votes
4answers
642 views

Coding convention regarding the usage of underscores [closed]

There seems to be divided opinion on this subject, and I wanted to get people's insights on whether they've found using underscore prefixes and suffixes to be helpful with coding or not. You know, ...
6
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7answers
526 views

Commenting regular expressions

Are there any common practises for commenting the regular expressions: inline comments referring different part of RegEx or general comment for all expression?
6
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3answers
729 views

Is it bad idea to use flag variable to search MAX element in array?

Over my programming career I formed a habit to introduce a flag variable that indicates that the first comparison has occured, just like Msft does in its linq Max() extension method implementation ...
0
votes
5answers
282 views

Should we only catch in exceptional circumstances?

Whether error handling by throwing exceptions is good or bad is contentious. Are exceptions as control flow considered a serious antipattern? If so, Why? The common line is that exceptions are for ...
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0answers
71 views

MVC Controller - keeping methods small

I'm reading uncle Bob's Clean Code and it completely revolutionizes my programming style. In this book author claims that best methods are small methods. What about controller's action methods in ...
0
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2answers
70 views

Erlang return value conventions

Should functions that return tuples, always return tuples? For example, I have a function is_user_name_allowed that returns a tuple in this he form if the username is not allowed: {false, ["Reason ...
36
votes
14answers
5k views

How important is it to clean up someone else's code when faced with a tight deadline? [closed]

(I'm talking about HTML / CSS code (not programming languages) but I think we also face the same issue as with programmers.) I am the senior front-end designer in a team and I often have to re-work ...
41
votes
6answers
3k views

Is making a small change, testing it, then “rinse and repeat”, a bad habit?

I am a programmer with a number of years of experience. I realized I got a certain habit. I'm not sure whether it's really a bad habit or not. I get a list of tasks to perform for a solution, even ...
1
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2answers
414 views

How to set up something like an integration server that measures the quality of code and reject the code if the score is below a certain number?

Even if I don't like enforcing people to do things (and I believe that it may decline the productivity and cause anger), I really want to enforce good coding style. Is there a way to set up ...
6
votes
2answers
408 views

C programming practice, passing a pointer to a function [closed]

Consider the following C function which takes as argument a string, which is then stored inside a struct: struct mystruct* usestring(char* string) { struct mystruct *struct; struct = ...
0
votes
2answers
114 views

Where are C variables declared [duplicate]

I see a lot of code with variables declared right after the function, but when I post something like that people end up mad and say it is better to declare them when they are used. I assume this all ...
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votes
1answer
318 views

Why is the JavaScript-language different in different programs/sites? [closed]

I'm kind of new to programming and i have a question that's been bothering me for awhile. Why is the JavaScript-language different in different programs/sites. I've used Codecademy to practice and ...
2
votes
1answer
89 views

Is this approach to CSS correct?

Reading SASS basic features on their website, I stumbled upon the @extend feature. The example they give is the following: .message { border: 1px solid #ccc; padding: 10px; color: #333; ...
5
votes
11answers
485 views

Is too much whitespace a bad thing? [closed]

I'm often told by my friends and colleagues that I use way to much whitespace. I guess I do use a little too much whitespace. I often add a line break almost after every line and large blocks of ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

css - use universal '*' selector vs. html or body selector?

Applying styles to the body tag will be applied to the whole page, so body { font-family: Verdana } will be applied to the whole page. This could also be done with * {font-family: Verdana} ...