[erlang-questions] Style wars: junk comments

Wed Sep 12 12:27:04 CEST 2012

> On Wed, Sep 12, 2012 at 11:12 AM, Ivan Uemlianin <ivan@REDACTED> wrote:
>> If you are reading code on paper, it helps if functions are positioned
>> predictably in the stack of paper.  Alphabetic ordering of functions and
>> grouping functions into sections are two good ways of doing this.
> "Reading code on paper" has already been mentioned some times in this
> thread.
> But really people read code on paper, nowadays?

Yes, me, lots.

Let me offer you a paradox, half fun and full earnest.'

Fancy text editors and IDEs are tools for NOT reading code.

If you actually want to read code, paper (ideally augmented
with literate-programming-style automatically generated
indices) is way better.  If you don't know what I'm talking
about, look at Knuth's "The Stanford GraphBase".

Just today, I found a bug in a Smalltalk class that had
defeated me for a day because using an IDE is too much
like tunnel vision.  Given a printed listing, it took me
half an hour to read the whole class, and the bug practically
jumped up and down and shouted to get my attention.  (In
fact there were two copies of it.)  And another bug that I
hadn't tested for yet also demanded and got my attention;
working with the code in the IDE my attention was constantly
directed *away* from stuff I wasn't currently working on or
currently testing.

When you are coping with over 100,000 lines of code,
tools that help you *NOT* read are desperately valuable.

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