In my previous article, I looked at how the concept of simplicity in fiction writing can be applied to writing code. In this follow-up piece, I explore how writing that first draft, and editing, can help guide programmers towards perfecting their code.
As a coder, I like to continually draw inspiration and insight into my craft from as wide a variety of sources as possible, and one of the most rewarding sources of inspiration has been from my enjoyment of writing and reading fiction. This has been a personal pursuit, rather than with a goal of being published or becoming an author, and while I’m not going to be the next Terry Pratchett, the more I’ve explored the craft of writing, the more I’ve come to realise how the basic principles of good fiction can be applied to writing good code.
In a series of posts, I’ll explore some key principles about writing fiction, and how these can help you become a better coder.
Okay, I’ll admit: comments are not an exciting topic for most programmers. They generally aren’t viewed by anyone else except other coders, and if we’re honest, most coders ignore them, either by folding them up in their IDE, or by skipping over them. This is normally because coders don’t think about their comments in the same way as they think about their code.
So here are the tips I’ve come across over time that have helped me make better use of comments.