Linked by MOS6510 on Wed 17th Apr 2013 21:20 UTC
General Development "You often hear about how important it is to write 'readable code'. Developers have pretty strong opinions about what makes code more readable. The more senior the developer, the stronger the opinion. But, have you ever stopped to think about what really makes code readable?"
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Consistency
by flypig on Wed 17th Apr 2013 22:27 UTC
flypig
Member since:
2005-07-13

Really interesting article, and worth bearing in mind for anyone involved in teaching programming.

However, in terms of the wider argument, I think an important point the article misses is about consistency. One of the problems with natural languages like English is that the rules are not consistent (in the non-mathematical sense), which makes them very hard to learn. You can make a language easier to learn without reducing its expressiveness by making it more consistent.

It doesn't follow that consistency breads simplicity (as Alfman pointed out, the simple rules of a Turing machine don't make programming in it easier). On the other hand lack of consistency definitely results in complexity (like, for example INTERCAL!).

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