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

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77
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8answers
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Should you always pass the bare minimum data needed into a function in cases like this

Let's say I have a function IsAdmin that checks whether a user is an admin. Let's also say that the admin checking is done by matching user id, name and password against some sort of rule (not ...
52
votes
17answers
10k views

Working on someone else's code

I have hardly a year's experience in coding. After I started working, most of the time I would be working on someone else's code, either adding new features over the existing ones or modifying the ...
43
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8answers
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How can I learn to effectively write Pythonic code?

Doing a google search for "pythonic" reveals a wide range of interpretations. The wikipedia page says: A common neologism in the Python community is pythonic, which can have a wide range of ...
36
votes
10answers
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Does the usage of LINQ and Lambda Expressions lead to less readable code? [closed]

I'm having a discussion with a co-worker on Linq, I'll copy here: Co-Worker: Lets be honest here. Linq syntax sucks. It's confusing and non-intuitive. Me: oh come on, more confusing ...
70
votes
11answers
5k views

Never use Strings in Java? [closed]

I stumbled upon a blog entry discouraging the use of Strings in Java for making your code lack semantics, suggesting that you should use thin wrapper classes instead. This is the before and after ...
41
votes
8answers
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When is it appropriate to make a separate function when there will only ever be a single call to said function? [duplicate]

We are designing coding standards, and are having disagreements as to if it is ever appropriate to break code out into separate functions within a class, when those functions will only ever be called ...
28
votes
13answers
2k views

Handling my antiquated coworker

I'm a fairly young programmer, and I work at a medium sized company's IT department. I have a coworker, and he is a really good Visual Basic 6 programmer. And I mean really good. Honestly. He can ...
36
votes
14answers
17k views

If you need more than 3 levels of indentation, you're screwed? [closed]

Per the Linux kernel coding style document: The answer to that is that if you need more than 3 levels of indentation, you're screwed anyway, and should fix your program. What can I deduce ...
34
votes
8answers
2k views

When using method chaining, do I reuse the object or create one?

When using method chaining like: var car = new Car().OfBrand(Brand.Ford).OfModel(12345).PaintedIn(Color.Silver).Create(); there may be two approaches: Reuse the same object, like this: public ...
25
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16answers
2k views

Are short identifiers bad? [closed]

Are short identifiers bad? How does identifier length correlate with code comprehension? What other factors (besides code comprehension) might be of consideration when it comes to naming identifiers? ...
19
votes
7answers
16k views

What should my “code sample” look like? [closed]

I've just had quite a good phone interview (for a CakePHP-related position, not that it's especially important to the question). The interviewer seemed to be impressed with my resume and personality. ...
38
votes
4answers
37k 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 ...
37
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9answers
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Scientific evidence that supports using long variable names instead of abbreviations?

Is there any scientific evidence that the human brain can read and understand fully written variable names better/faster than abbreviated ones? Like PersistenceManager persistenceManager; in ...
23
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8answers
8k views

Should I write HTML or CSS first?

There are a lot of analogies for HTML/CSS development; which can be a bit confuse for a beginner. HTML = foundations/house CSS = walls/blueprint/wallpaper Is there any best practice here? ...
22
votes
8answers
2k views

Should comments say WHY the program is doing what it is doing? (opinion on a dictum by the inventor of Forth) [duplicate]

The often provocative Chuck Moore (inventor of the Forth language) gave the following advice[1]: Use comments sparingly! (I bet that's welcome.) Remember that program you looked through - the ...
17
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7answers
2k views

Should a function use premature returns or wrap everything in if clauses? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Where did the notion of “one return only” come from? Which is better? I see pros and cons for both, so I can't really decide on which one to stick to. Wrap in ...
14
votes
4answers
16k views

Throwing an exception inside finally

Static code analyzers like Fortify "complain" when an exception might be thrown inside a finally block, saying that Using a throw statement inside a finally block breaks the logical progression ...
25
votes
7answers
5k views

When should I use a 2-property class over a pre-built structure like a KeyValuePair?

When should you put Key/Value type of data in it's own class instead of using a pre-built generic structure, such as a KeyValuePair or a Tuple? For example, most ComboBoxes I create contain a ...
19
votes
5answers
1k views

Are there any scientifically rigorous studies of coding style principles? [closed]

Is a coding style principle - e.g. the single-exit principle - really a good thing? Always, or just sometimes? How much difference does it really make? Whatever your opinions, these are obviously ...
9
votes
10answers
2k views

Single Line Statements & Good Practices

I have recently acquired a habit which I know many of you may frown upon, but which, in the end, helps me keeping an eye on global code structure rather than on the structure of a single, (sometimes) ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Method flags as arguments or as member variables?

I think the title "Method flags as arguments or as member variables?" may be suboptimal, but as I'm missing any better terminology atm., here goes: I'm currently trying to get my head around the ...
5
votes
2answers
324 views

Identifier vs domain object as a method parameter

Are there any objective arguments for or against using objects vs unique ID as method/function parameters? (and members of other objects?). Specially in the context of statically typed languages (C#/...
5
votes
2answers
634 views

API/Technical Writers Guide [closed]

Is there any good book/tutorial/guide for programmers, which can help them to write good programming documentation/tutorials/guides?
5
votes
3answers
615 views

Are there standard style guides for PHP? [closed]

I've been working in a very small team for PHP development and we've been using an ad-hoc, "Invented Here" style guide. Now that our team and codebase is growing, we would like to use a more broadly-...
38
votes
12answers
3k views

Intentional misspellings to avoid reserved words

I often see code that include intentional misspellings of common words that for better or worse have become reserved words: klass or clazz for class: Class clazz = ThisClass.class kount for count in ...
29
votes
12answers
7k views

Does anyone prefer proportional fonts? [closed]

I was reading the wikipedia article on programming style and noticed something in an argument against vertically aligned code: Reliance on mono-spaced font; tabular formatting assumes that the ...
18
votes
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 ...
12
votes
5answers
959 views

Evolution in coding standards, how do you deal with them?

How do you deal with evolution in the coding standards / style guide in a project for the existing code base? Let's say someone on your team discovered a better way of object instantiation in the ...
11
votes
7answers
827 views

Are More Comments Better in High-Turnover Environments?

I was talking with a colleague today. We work on code for two different projects. In my case, I'm the only person working on my code; in her case, multiple people work on the same codebase, including ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

using unsigned integers in c, c++

I have a very simple question that baffles me for a long time. I am dealing with networks and databases so a lot of data I am dealing with are 32-bit and 64-bit counters (unsigned), 32-bit and 64-bit ...
7
votes
7answers
1k views

Why would an employer ask for a 'long' code sample? [closed]

What would a large project that spanned multiple files and >1000 lines show to an employer that a few individual files and a couple hundred lines couldn't capture?
2
votes
2answers
460 views

Helper Methods Placement [duplicate]

Here's a question that's always bugged me. I'm going to use java as an example because I've almost never run into a problem in java where I didn't need to use helper methods in its class structure. ...
2
votes
4answers
561 views

How do you decide what code to put into a function?

I started out with a script that was a few hundred lines. Later, I realized I wanted another script that would require much of the same code. I decided to wrap certain areas of the original script ...
0
votes
9answers
9k 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 ...
17
votes
13answers
3k views

Is it an appropriate use of #define to make typing repeated code easier?

Is there any view on whether using the #define to define full lines of code for simplifying coding is good or bad programming practice? For example, if I needed to print a bunch of words together, I'd ...
14
votes
5answers
1k views

Reformatting and version control

Code formatting matters. Even indentation matters. And consistency is more important than minor improvements. But projects usually don't have a clear, complete, verifiable and enforced style guide ...
13
votes
5answers
748 views

Should coding standards be enforced by the continuous integration server?

Should coding standards/style be enforced by the continuous integration server running static analysis tools (ex. PMD, StyleCop/FxCop) and failing the build if the standards are not followed? What ...
11
votes
5answers
925 views

Named arguments (parameters) as a readability aid

A long time ago I programmed a lot in ADA, and it was normal to name arguments when invoking a function - SomeObject.DoSomething(SomeParameterName => someValue); Now that C# supports named arguments, ...
10
votes
3answers
755 views

Do code style guides increase productivity? [duplicate]

Our team of 12 is currently considering implementing a style guide. The question came up if long term productivity benefits outweigh the short term productivity loss as everyone adapts. What has been ...
9
votes
4answers
503 views

How to avoid general names for abstract classes?

In general it's good to avoid words like "handle" or "process" as part of routine names and class names, unless you are dealing with (e.g.) file handles or (e.g.) unix processes. However abstract ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

Is the use of explicit ' == true' comparison always bad? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Make a big deal out of == true? I've been looking at a lot of code samples recently, and I keep noticing the use of... if( expression == true ) // do something... ...
8
votes
8answers
1k views

How would you feel if your code editor formatted your code for you as you typed, without tabs/spaces?

As with most things, I'm sure this concept has been tried before - I just haven't come across editors that use what I've termed 'Virtual Formatting'. The principle is that there's a floating left-...
7
votes
7answers
2k views

Ensuring that headers are explicitly included in CPP file

I think it's generally good practice to #include the header for any types used in a CPP file, regardless of what is already included via the HPP file. So I might #include <string> in both my HPP ...
7
votes
9answers
2k views

Is it any good to use binary arithmetic in a C++ code like “C style”?

I like the fact that the C language lets you use binary arithmetic in an explicit way in your code, sometimes the use of the binary arithmetic can also give you a little edge in terms of performance; ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Is break a code smell?

I'm asking in terms of a loop, obviously break is important in switch statements. Whether or not switch statements themselves are code smells is a separate issue. So consider the following use cases ...
4
votes
1answer
312 views

Is '@' Error Suppression a Valid Technique for Testing for an Optional Array Key?

Rarst and I were debating offline about the use of the '@' error suppression operator in PHP, specifically for use to test for existence of "optional" array keys, i.e. array keys that are being used ...
2
votes
3answers
383 views

To store data or not?

I'd like to ask you about one simple thing. I have class A that do something (for example counts something ). There is also one class B that handle some parameters to this class (class A is member of ...
17
votes
15answers
3k views

I hate one of our coding standards and it drives me insane, how to process it? [closed]

Disclaimer: Not as exaggerated as the title suggests, but it still makes me uncomfortable. I'm just going to express honestly, so take it with a grain of salt. Just pretend that I'm talking about that ...
16
votes
9answers
1k views

Hiding away complexity with sub functions [duplicate]

I am having a discussion on code style, and it's starting to sound like a "matter of taste". I strongly believe otherwise, so I'm writing this to get your opinion and learn from your arguments for and ...
11
votes
3answers
893 views

Should I nest functions in languages that allow me to do that or should I rather avoid it?

In JavaScript, PL/SQL and some other languages, functions can be nested, i.e. declared within another function. This could be used to break a large function into smaller pieces, but keep those pieces ...