My TL;DR style notes from articles I read today.
“Programs are meant to be read by humans and only incidentally for computers to execute”
— Donald Knuth
- Write intent revealing names. If the variable stores the last updated record, name it ‘lastUpdatedRecord’, not just ‘record’, or even ‘lastRecord’
- Make clear distinctions. What kind of info will ‘ProductInfo’ has that the ‘ProductData’ won’t?
- Add context to names. Put variable state in well-named classes.
- Don’t abbreviate. Say ‘getWindow’ not ‘getWin’
- Pick one word per abstract concept & stick with it. Using both fetch and retrieve will cause confusion. Pick and use only one.
- Don’t pun, don’t make your readers mentally map names to something else.
- Use conventions for common operations.
- Avoid similar sounding & easily misspelled names.
- Favor readability over brevity.
Full post here, 7 mins read
“…there are very few inherently hard programs. If you are looking at a piece of code and it looks very hard – if you can’t understand what this thing is supposed to be doing – that’s almost always an indication that it was poorly thought through. At that point you don’t roll up your sleeves and try to fix the code; you take a step back and think it through again. When you’ve thought it through enough, you’ll find out that it’s easy“.
- Bernie Cosell
Scenario analysis: Good programmers always ask themselves - how can this break?
Naming things well
“There are only two hard things in Computer Science: cache invalidation and naming things.”
- Phil Karlton
Consistency: Consistency across your programming practices allows you to concentrate on essential complexity & and not accidental complexity.
Continuous learning about the developments in software engineering
Full post here, 5 mins read
When you are working solo, you are filling multiple roles on a project. Following these practices help with a good outcome:
- Stick to a workflow
- Organize & share components
- Write documentation
- Observe & iterate
- Communicate regularly with the rest of the team/client
Full post here, 11 mins read
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