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

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6answers
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sizeof style: sizeof(type) or sizeof variable?

I've seen two styles of using sizeof for memory-related operations (such as in memset or malloc): sizeof(type), and sizeof variable or sizeof(variable) Which one would you prefer, or would you use ...
2
votes
3answers
314 views

Equating multiple new variables with an old one

Sometimes I run into a situation where I need to equate two new variables with an old one. Which of the following (if any) is a good practice (w.r.t. code readability or any other factor), under what ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Reason for placing function type and method name on different lines in C

I just started at a company and one of the style comments at my first code review was that the return type and method name should be on different lines. For example, this void foo() { } should be ...
7
votes
4answers
856 views

Is the usage of internal scope blocks within a function bad style?

There are some (quite rare) cases where there is a risk of: reusing a variable which is not intended to be reused (see example 1), or using a variable instead of another, semantically close (see ...
2
votes
4answers
558 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 ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Java: How to make local fields & parameters final without having a 'final' keyword on each declaration

By default, I want all my local variables and method parameters to be final. Unfortunately, the Java language designers chose a different default: variables&parameters are by default non-final, ...
35
votes
13answers
7k views

In languages that don't allow underscores in integer constants, is it a good practice to create a constant for 1 billion?

In languages that don't allow underscores in integer literals, is it a good idea to create a constant for 1 billion? e.g. in C++: size_t ONE_BILLION = 1000000000; Certainly, we shouldn't create ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Is repeating links to the same class in a single javadoc comment a bad practice?

I'm currently writing an API and its documentation. For example I have something like this: public interface Event { } public interface Process { } public interface EventProcessor { /** * ...
15
votes
7answers
2k views

Should I write compact code or code with lots of spaces? [duplicate]

I have two friends that have completely different schools of thought on how to lay out their code. The first says that code should be well-indented and use lots of spaces and to name variables ...
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 ...
1
vote
5answers
274 views

Is it a good practice to write a method that gets something and checks the value? [duplicate]

Occassinally I have to write methods like this: string GetReportOutputDirectoryAndMakeSureExist() { string path = Path.Combine ( ... ) //whatever logic if(!Directory.Exists(path)) Directory....
6
votes
5answers
3k views

Programming Style in Large Scale C++ Applications

Recently I've been browsing source code of large applications written in C++ to learn a bit but I couldn't help but notice that most if not all use a lot of IFDEFs and class-less functions (where they ...
16
votes
5answers
3k views

What are the downsides of mixing tabs and spaces? [duplicate]

The advantage of using tabs for indentation is that people can configure their editor to use the tab width they are comfortable with. The only argument against this seems to be that people don't want ...
1
vote
3answers
415 views

Code Base with awful code conventions, follow them?

With no time to refactor, when you are working on legacy code, with the most awful conventions, what is the best practice? Will trying to follow better coding style would improve readability or ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

What does Uncle Bob mean by 'noun phrase names'?

I am reading Clean Code by Uncle Bob. Because I am not a native-English speaker, I couldn't understand following statement: Classes and objects should have noun or noun phrase names like ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

When are chained assignments (i.e. a=b=c) bad form?

I'm working on a VB.Net WinForms project and found myself writing code like this: this.Fizz.Enabled = this.Buzz.Enabled = someCondition; I couldn't decide whether that was bad code or not. Are ...
2
votes
2answers
458 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. ...
43
votes
12answers
3k views

Coding style (do more, then simplify) [duplicate]

I'm a CS student and I have been coding for a few months shy of a year now, and I seem to have developed what I think may be a "bad" habit and I'm wondering if anyone does the same (or whether it's a ...
3
votes
2answers
792 views

Programming by Intention, Depth-First or Breadth-First?

Say I have the following graph of dependencies between procedures/functions/methods: o / \ v e / \ / \ r f l w That is, function o first calls function v, and then ...
6
votes
3answers
427 views

Dynamic typing function arguments - how to keep readability high?

Dynamic typing newbie here, hoping for some wizened words of wisdom. I'm curious if there is a set of best practices out there for dealing with function arguments (and let's be honest, variables in ...
8
votes
1answer
393 views

Is deep nesting of control flow in code a studied problem?

I made the case to coworkers that deep levels of control flow was harmful to the readability of code. Example, taken from the relevant stack overflow question If you need more than 3 levels of ...
5
votes
4answers
19k views

Forward declaration vs include

Reduce the number of #include files in header files. It will reduce build times. Instead, put include files in source code files and use forward declarations in header files. I read this in here. ...
0
votes
1answer
147 views

Less code or less operation [closed]

Sometimes I hesitate between "More code to avoid unnecessary operations" and "less code but with redundant operations". Let me just take an example (Win32 API): I try to paint some controls manually ...
1
vote
2answers
5k views

unique_ptr and references - coding style question

I'm pretty sure this is a question purely about aesthetics but I wanted to get all your opinions on it before I start proliferating this type of code in my codebase. Consider the following code: //...
5
votes
2answers
297 views

Is it OK to have a method return different types based on a parameter?

I'm looking for a reference to clean coding styles that I can pass to a team member. In particular, the rule that a method should not change its return type based on an input parameter. If you need ...
9
votes
6answers
2k views

Should my code be DRY or readable if it can't be both?

I'm writing Ruby code for a simple encryption exercise and have frequently run across this dilemma (the exercise is a solitaire cipher if you must know). It is a question of whether I should pad out ...
3
votes
2answers
404 views

Choosing between words with different spellings for function names

A question has been bothering me for a while: when developing international projects, it is common sense to use English as the reference language since it is the language that the most people ...
5
votes
3answers
614 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-...
1
vote
2answers
357 views

Python code style - blank lines in long list

I'm curious, is there a standard approach to dealing with long lists in the Python community, and in particular, is there any antipathy toward doing blank lines followed by comments to break up a ...
3
votes
4answers
4k views

Microsoft's coding standards for ASP.NET controls

I cannot find any naming standards/conventions in MSDN for naming ASP.NET controls. One of the following standards tends to be used by programmers: lblAddress AddressLabel Address According to ...
2
votes
4answers
4k 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 ...
6
votes
3answers
3k views

Is relying on implicit argument conversion considered dangerous?

C++ has a feature (I cannot figure out the proper name of it), that automatically calls matching constructors of parameter types if the argument types are not the expected ones. A very basic example ...
0
votes
5answers
130 views

Where to read from file?

In Java: I have a class Students. I would like to read a list of students from a file. Which one is more elegant: Reading and constructing the list in main(), and creating a Student object with the ...
46
votes
9answers
5k views

What's the right balance between code consistency and code improvement?

Recently I had a discussion with a colleague regarding code style. He was arguing that your usage of APIs and the general patterns you are using should be as similar as possible with the surrounding ...
5
votes
4answers
372 views

In which order should I do comparisons? [duplicate]

I'm a strong proponent of writing if statements like this: variable == constant Because to me it just makes sense, it is more readable than the inverted: constant == variable Which seems to be ...
7
votes
7answers
2k views

Prevent developers from using constants

I have one one software system which allows developers to specify an ID or name to create NodeReferences. Both work fine, but ID's are not guaranteed to be the same across different environments. I've ...
1
vote
3answers
229 views

About the usage of assertions [duplicate]

I stumbled upon an article named Programming With Assertions. And beside the mechanism of turning on and off assertions after compile time, I don't get it. Why were assertions introduced on language ...
12
votes
7answers
788 views

Is there a way to support different coding styles in a development team

The Problem: Two developers => three opinions on indention, braces on new line or not etc. We usually work with three or four people on our projects and each of those has it's own code style. I know, ...
8
votes
3answers
249 views

Is a single object to be preferred over multiple variables?

It was quite hard to put what I meant into a title, but it's easy to put into code. C++ Is this int offset_x = 10; int offset_y = 40; ... element.move(offset_x, offset_y); To be preferred over ...
1
vote
4answers
3k views

Switching from ActionScript to JavaScript, tips for writing code?

I am quite comfortable with using actionscript3 and flash. I also have some experience with Java. But recently, I started learning JavaScript and node.js. I ultimately want to make a 3d game in ...
5
votes
3answers
644 views

Space between negative sign and variable name

I tried doing a Google search, as well as searching this Stack Exchange site but could not find a question relating directly to this. The PEP 8 -- Style Guide for Python Code has lots of good style ...
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 ...
0
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the C++ convention, if any, for naming to differentiate between structure types and other types? [closed]

In general, should I use some sort of convention for structure names which is distinct from other type name? I was thinking about this when my professor started talking about structures. I had the ...
2
votes
2answers
874 views

coding style for If condition [duplicate]

I came across below style of writing if statements in C#, on msdn code examples. Usually when I write if statements, the conditions I would write `(Customer != null) I want to know if there is any ...
2
votes
1answer
228 views

Unindented elses

Been writing code since about 18 years now. Lately, I've got into the habit of not indenting elses and when I look at the code it does worry me a bit mostly that someone who might look at the code ...
11
votes
4answers
496 views

Always pull out common cases and branch separately? [duplicate]

We had a disagreement in a code review. What I had written: if(unimportantThing().isGood && previouslyCalculatedIndex != -1) { //Stuff } if(otherThing().isBad && ...
1
vote
4answers
2k views

Legitimate reasons for circular references in C++

I have project written in C++ that I am working on which has a parent-child relationship where each child has only one parent. I had previously decided after looking at this post that I would make the ...
7
votes
3answers
501 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 ...
1
vote
2answers
673 views

Style for creating IEnumerable unions [closed]

There isn't any cool LINQ sugar for creating unions. The Enumerable.Union() method is usually called like this: var bigList = list1.Union(list2); The alternative is to call Enumerable.Union() which ...
0
votes
1answer
333 views

Formatting Dynamic Web Pages

A page built so that is has server side scripts implemented on the page. Should indentation of the code be according to the server side logic (making it easier to read while coding) or according to ...