Say It. Do It. Prove It!

Ryan Sonnek bio photo By Ryan Sonnek

There are lots of software development methodologies. I’ve voiced my opinions over the years on how to create great software, and these three small statements sum up a pretty large part of my software development philosophy.

Say it.

Document your code. Standard javadocs are fine. Stick to method/class level docs with none of that body comment crap. Give a humane overview of what you’re trying to accomplish with the block of code. This is also a great place to drop references to external documentation which may back up why a certain approach is being used.

Do it.

Write your code. Keep it clean and concise. Only do what you said you’re going to do and nothing more.

Prove it.

Unit tests. I don’t believe you did what you said you were going to do without tests.

Traditional TDD heavily emphasizes writing unit tests which can be used as a form of documenting what you’re going to do, but I still find it valuable to have some level of documentation within the code itself (especially for interfaces).

Honestly, if more developers would just keep to these simple tips, we’d be a lot better off.