“code sense”

“Clean Code” by Robert C Martin uses the phrase “code sense” when describing a developer’s relationship with clean code.  I like this phrase.  It represents the intuition that goes with looking at code.

He writes about how most people can identify messy code.  The problem comes in how to make it better.  This “code sense” lets people “see options” and “chose the best variation.”  This whole passage comes from a section subtitled “The Art of Clean Code?”.

I find it particularly interesting the comparison to art.  Especially because art is part talent and part learned.  The talent part comes from having the ideas and certain skills.  The learned part helps one know what tools are available.  A painter learns about the types of paint available.  A developer learns about refactorings.  These are all tools in the toolbox.  You still need a human to figure out when and where to use them.

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This week, we are hosting Uncle Bob (Robert C Martin) at JavaRanch in the Agile and Other Processes forum.  Come on in, ask him a question or join the discussion.  You might even win a free copy of the book Clean Code: A Handbook of Agile Software Craftsmanship.

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