Coding is done only once. Then it is continuously read, debugged, refactored, and scaled. The way you create code today will help you scale and maintain the program in the future. In software development, deadline pressure is a common occurrence. Regardless, it’s critical to follow best practices while writing code to help ensure higher-quality code for both you and anyone who might need to enhance it in the future.
In this article, we cover the significance of following best practices when coding, along with top best practices every beginning programmer should be familiar with:
- Naming conventions
- Code indentation
Simple variable names like X_1 and X_2 are frequently used by developers as temporary stand-ins, but they later forget to be replaced with more meaningful alternatives. Code becomes harder to read as a result, which causes confusion.
One of the first lessons in programming is that the names of your variables should be simple to comprehend and accurately describe the data they hold. Making your code understandable depends on how you name your variables. The goal of variable naming while programming is to create names for variables that are self-explanatory and have a consistent theme.
Objects, variables, classes, functions, and constants should all have logical names. However, we also work to make our code understandable and concise. So, you can use its abbreviation if the most obvious name is too long to keep the code succinct. Just keep in mind that the shorthand should continue to be understandable.
Your code needs to be formatted and indented to be organized. Appropriate line spacing, line length, wraps, and breaks are part of the coding formatting and indentation. Programmers make their code understandable and well-organized by using indents, white space, and tabs.
Always remember that there is no correct or incorrect method to indent your code. There are widely held views, but nothing is accepted by everyone.
Some people utilize two spaces, while others use four. However, being consistent with your chosen style is crucial here. So, maintain a single strategy for the entirety of your application because when the formatting and indentation styles change midway through a script, confusion can arise.
Your code will almost certainly be upgraded or modified over time. It’s also true that practically all coders will occasionally encounter other people’s code. Inexperienced programmers have a bad habit of coding with little or no comments.
For programmers working in a team, where more than one individual may be working on a certain module, this presents a substantial challenge.
Coding comments are sections of code that the compiler skips through. This indicates that they are never processed by the computer. They serve no other purpose than to make the programmer more understandable, especially when they return to work on new scripts in the future.
It is important to test your work as you go along when developing software, and you should plan for this. It calls for the test cases to be created before the software is actually coded.
Additionally, while basic unit testing is a wonderful habit to get into, Automated Functional Testing (AFT) may also be done with the aid of programs like Geb Spock and Selenium.