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

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14
votes
2answers
686 views

Creating nested functions for purely aesthetic reasons?

I've always wondered what other programmers think about the idea of creating pure aesthetic functions. Say I have a function that processes a chunk of data: Function ProcessBigData. Say I need ...
6
votes
6answers
2k views

Best practice in setting return value (use else or?)

Whenever you want to return a value from a method, but whatever you return depends on some other value, you typically use branching: int calculateSomething() { if (a == b) { return x; } else ...
-2
votes
1answer
113 views

Is there a named antipattern for unclear API not exposing the requirements? [closed]

In the source code I'm evaluating (jarjar), there exists java code that can be used like this: JarJarTask fixture = new JarJarTask(); fixture.addConfiguredRule(new Rule()); fixture.execute(); Which ...
25
votes
5answers
3k views

Why is it bad to write something in language X as if you're writing a program in language Y in terms of using a shared coding paradigm [closed]

A while ago, I asked a question on SO about something written in C++, but instead of getting an answer to the problem at hand, the comments went all crazy on my coding style, even when I indicated ...
68
votes
22answers
23k views

Where do you declare variables? The top of a method or when you need them? [closed]

I am in sort of a dilemma (in a geekish way of course). I love to declare variables at the beginning of my methods, and usually order them in some logical way. The problem is, when the list gets ...
-1
votes
3answers
376 views

Should I always use “is” as prefix for boolean variables? [closed]

Should I always use is as prefix for boolean variables? What about booleans that indicate something in past? Should I write isInitialized or wasInitialized? Should I write for properties IsManyMembers ...
16
votes
5answers
2k views

How can you decompose a constructor?

Lets say I have a Enemy class, and the constructor would look something like: public Enemy(String name, float width, float height, Vector2 position, float speed, int maxHp, int ...
0
votes
0answers
75 views

Check some value between each function call

Can you recommend a nice way of checking a particular value between calls to a set of functions? E.g. something like this in Python (might not be terribly 'Pythonic'): self.error_code = 0 # this ...
0
votes
1answer
69 views

Preferred Scala code style for several embedded brace sets

I was wondering the correct way to format a situation such as this, where I have a def, a foreach and an if clause all nested, requiring braces. Currently I find it hard to read, and there is no ...
32
votes
11answers
4k views

Is it okay to make coding style changes on an open source project that doesn't follow best practices?

Recently, I came across a number of open source Ruby (or majority of it was Ruby) projects on GitHub that when checked with a code analyzing tool like Rubocop, create a lot of offenses. Now, most of ...
0
votes
1answer
51 views

How using tab affects commands like diff

In the page at http://pear.php.net/manual/en/standards.indenting.php, it is advised to use space instead of tab as it causes issue with diff, patches. Here is the excerpt from the page. Use an ...
1
vote
2answers
127 views

Approach to coding algorithms to minimize rework [closed]

I find myself reworking my code quite a bit, especially when learning to write algorithms that involve keeping track of multiple attributes and labels. I feel that having the pseudo-code written up, ...
-4
votes
2answers
359 views

How to really understand programming? [duplicate]

I have started to learn to program. I am interested in it and dont mind how long it takes to learn. But I am using books to start out and I find that there are some things I get and some things I have ...
19
votes
11answers
1k views

Are long functions acceptable if they have internal structure?

When dealing with complicated algorithms in languages with support for nested functions (such as Python and D) I often write huge functions (because the algorithm is complicated) but mitigate this by ...
15
votes
12answers
2k views

Teaching myself, as a physicist, to become a better programmer

I've always liked physics, and I've always liked coding, so when I got the offer for a PhD position doing numerical physics (details are not relevant, it's mostly parallel programming for a cluster) ...
2
votes
1answer
53 views

When should I pass setting-like value as class' variable and when as an assoc. array?

Following my other question, is there a general rule of thumb, when we should pass a setting-like value, that controls class' behavior (for example displayed texts) as as class' constant or variable, ...
1
vote
1answer
97 views

When should I pass value as class variable and when as a method argument?

Is there a general rule of thumb, when we should pass a value as as class variable and when as a method argument? Or is it just a choice of the developer? For example -- are there any reasons, why ...
0
votes
3answers
113 views

Long vs short scripts? Big vs small scripts? [closed]

As a programmer, I have always wondered whether it is preferable to write (a) short modular functions that are each stored in their own script (i.e., file) or (b) long comprehensive scripts that ...
13
votes
10answers
3k views

Passing member variable as a method parameter

In a project, I've found a code like this: class SomeClass { private SomeType _someField; public SomeType SomeField { get { return _someField; } set { _someField = value; ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

Switch or a Dictionary when assigning to new object

Recently, I've come to prefer mapping 1-1 relationships using Dictionaries instead of Switch statements. I find it to be a little faster to write and easier to mentally process. Unfortunately, when ...
2
votes
1answer
142 views

How far to go when standardizing code [duplicate]

My small team and I have created a decent sized web application (~50k lines), with a fully featured API, all in Perl. As us perl hackers know.. it is easy to get sloppy. We had to port over a lot of ...
4
votes
4answers
408 views

Communicate to a junior developer about bad style

I have a friend who's managed to pick up comma first (best case might be made here: http://ajaxian.com/archives/is-there-something-to-the-crazy-comma-first-style) but it's 100% against our org's style ...
1
vote
2answers
84 views

Creating a large quantity of types VS using mostly the ones provided by the language [closed]

There are several times where you're coding a method which has two parameters with the same type, lets say, integers, NumberOfUnitA and NumberOfUnitB. Given that we're coding in a language that ...
3
votes
2answers
571 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 ...
2
votes
3answers
351 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 ...
2
votes
3answers
176 views

What's the best way to retrieve a value and a status [closed]

Given that all else is equal, and there are no coding standards defining the best approach, what would be the recommended way in C++ to check that a value exists and return it if it does? For ...
20
votes
8answers
10k views

Why Should I Avoid Inline Scripting?

A knowledgeable friend recently looked at a website I helped launch, and commented something like "very cool site, shame about the inline scripting in the source code". I'm definitely in a position ...
0
votes
2answers
119 views

In which file types I should include the copyright header? [duplicate]

My manager told me to include 15 line copyright notice on top of every file. I am not sure whether I need to include in sql, xml, txt, documention, config files or even html templates. In which ...
30
votes
11answers
2k 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 ...
8
votes
3answers
653 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

Use a setStatus($arg) function or have separate enable() and disable() functions?

I've got two functions at the moment: suspendGroupsAndUsers($groupId){} enableGroupsAndUsers($groupId) {} But the difference between the two is one variable/string. Should I just have: ...
2
votes
4answers
2k views

Is using `continue`, `break` in non-`switch` loops and `?:` bad practice? [duplicate]

Back in college I've been told that using break; and continue; outside switch statements (e.g. to escape for or while loops) is wrong, bad practice and bad habits at the same time because it only ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Style guide for C++

Right now I am using Google C++ Style Guide in my C++ code and I was pretty happy with it. Recently I was told that this guide is very bad: it is used internally by Google (I knew that), is outdated, ...
7
votes
6answers
464 views

Should if/else statements be arranged by rareness of cases or difficulty of dealing with them?

In some code I'm writing right now, I have something like this: if (uncommon_condition) { do_something_simple(); } else { do(); something(); long(); and(); complicated(); } ...
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 ...
12
votes
5answers
583 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 ...
0
votes
3answers
181 views

Javascript Naming Convention [closed]

I've been using Javascript for quite a while, but I've always ignored the common naming conventions that I see online (camelCase). I know it all depends on the developer's preference, but why camel ...
2
votes
4answers
1k views

DTOs matter on ASP.NET MVC JSON Action?

I recently came across an internal project where they were using DTOs throughout the solution, and when I sat down to implement a new MVC controller with a JSON REST endpoint I decided to use an ...
8
votes
4answers
460 views

Coding styles when using several disparate libraries

I am working on some C++ code that uses several libraries, including some C libraries, that all have different coding styles. It will be open sourced once it reaches a usable stage. Which would ...
0
votes
1answer
343 views

Should the helper function in class be defined before the usage or after

I need to do the code review of fellow members. One of the member always defined the helper functions at the bottom and use them at top e,g class Sample { public function SendFile(){ file = ...
1
vote
4answers
957 views

Usage of magic strings/numbers [closed]

This is somewhat controversial topic, and I guess there is as many opinions as there are programmers. But for the sake of it, I want to know what are the common practices in business (or in your work ...
6
votes
3answers
370 views

Is changing the type of a variable partway through a procedure in a dynamically typed language bad style?

In Python (and occasionally PHP) where variables do not have fixed types, I'll frequently perform 'type transformations' on a variable part-way through my code's logic. I'm not (necessarily) talking ...
3
votes
4answers
105 views

A metric to measure the cost of cut and paste programming

I'm hunting a metric to measure the cost of cut-and-paste programming. We already use tools to detect duplicated code - but if we don't clean up our duplicated code, how much will it cost us? We ...
33
votes
9answers
9k views

Does the usage of LINQ and Lambda Expressions lead to less readable code?

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 ...
29
votes
4answers
10k views

In Java, should I use “final” for parameters and locals even when I don't have to?

Java allows marking variables (fields / locals / parameters) as final, to prevent re-assigning into them. I find it very useful with fields, as it helps me quickly see whether some attributes - or an ...
1
vote
2answers
324 views

How to choose a code style for C++ [closed]

When starting to learn one new language, we have to choose perfect code style such as types or file name's first letter should be uppercase or lowercase, etc. But when I started to learn C++, I did ...
27
votes
15answers
5k views

Space around operators? a=b/2; or a = b / 2; What are the arguments? [closed]

Personally I prefer space around operators. For me it makes the code much more readable. What are the arguments not have space around them? Line length? An example from the Python style guide (I ...
12
votes
9answers
1k views

How important are code formatting guidelines? [closed]

Coding standards are common in any software development organization, but how important are they to follow? I can understand the need for some consistency, but when dealing with simple things like ...
111
votes
37answers
61k views

Should curly braces appear on their own line? [closed]

Should curly braces be on their own line or not? What do you think about it? if (you.hasAnswer()) { you.postAnswer(); } else { you.doSomething(); } or should it be if (you.hasAnswer()) { ...
0
votes
1answer
97 views

Which is preferred coding style to validate and return from a method [duplicate]

Which of the below is a preferred coding style (in c# .net) public void DoWork(Employee employee) { if(employee == null) return; if(!string.IsNullOrEmpty(employee.Name)) return; // Do ...