[erlang-questions] Rhetorical structure of code: Anyone interested in collaborating?

Éric Pailleau <>
Wed May 4 20:42:21 CEST 2016


Hi,
It is certainly unusual, but I almost always start by writing user documentation,  before coding.
There is some interests to do so.
First, documentation exists at end of project because it exists at beginning. 
Second, documentation describe simple things like you would need as a user, and not complicated things as consequences of bad coding. Coding is then driven by this goal, and generally simplify the code itself. 
Third, coders know the goal to achieve at start and do not loose time in, finally, unneeded things.
I really recommend to do this experience. 


"Envoyé depuis mon mobile " Eric

---- Grzegorz Junka a écrit ----

>
>> - I have said several times that we write code because it is quicker to
>> write it from scratch, than to discover code that does what we want, or
>> modify code that does almost what we want but not quite.
>>
>
>That's very true, but it applies all the way through. The more time has 
>been invested into some code the more time it would be needed to write 
>it from scratch. For example, I would prefer Elixir's convention of 
>listing the object on which the operation is being performed as the 
>first argument in library function calls over the OTP convention of 
>listing it as the last argument. But I am not going to rewrite OTP 
>libraries for that small inconvenience.
>
>Very often understanding an existing application and fixing issues is 
>easier and quicker than writing a new one from scratch, especially if 
>one only need to understand a specific or small part of it, and even 
>more if the existing application supports plugins allowing to skip large 
>parts of its code in custom modules.
>
>This should be a lesson for those who design applications and its 
>interfaces, and in my opinion putting effort into designing the 
>application properly is more important than documenting everything, 
>because it's always a trade-off. Very often the documentation isn't 
>there not because it's not needed, but because there was not enough 
>resources to put it there in the first place.
>
>If the architecture is good then the documentation can always be added 
>later. But if the architecture is not good, then no matter how much 
>documentation is written, it will be quickly outdated by the constant 
>and often fixes and patches to that architecture to make it working.
>
>Grzegorz
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