On this general topic, let me offer a plug for the book Clean Code, by Robert C. Martin.
Aside from the absolutely horrible chapter on error handling (which was contributed by Michael Feathers), the book has a lot of sound advice for writing good, clean, readable and maintainable code.
More importantly, much of the advice is concrete and actionable—it’s not vague platitudes like “use descriptive names”, it spends an entire chapter on what makes a good name.
Read this book (just skip chapter 7), and the next piece of code you write will be better. Get the whole team on board and the whole project will be better.
I know I sound like an advertisement, but clean code is something of a soapbox issue for me, and this is an excellent contribution to the subject. I just can’t imagine what possessed Uncle Bob to use that abysmal chapter on errors, though.
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