Characteristics of Good Software Code

Computers in Workplace

You might be asking, what makes for good software code? When writing using C#, Visual Basic, PHP, or Transact-SQL, you need to look for specific characteristics to help you determine if it is good code:

  1. Readable – Code that’s written in a way that makes it easy for other programmers to understand with a minimal amount of time and effort is considered top notch.
  2. Testable – Good code should be testable programmatically.
  3. Works – If the code doesn’t do what it needs to do, it is of no use.
  4. Pretty – Is the code well formatted? This has a lot to do with how well it appears in the IDE, and may have nothing to do with how well it actually works.
  5. Maintainable – Can the code be easily maintained over time, as changes are made and new features are added?
  6. Changeable – You don’t really know how well code is written until you attempt to make a change. If making a change turns into a coding nightmare, it isn’t good code
  7. Simple – Writing software is using associated with taking very complex requirements and wrapping them in a program that always works. This sometimes is accomplished by taking very complex problems and solving them with simple ideas.
  8. Fast – Is the code execution fast, or really slow? Good software is as fast as the user expects it to run, which is usually faster than technically possible. Good code makes difficult and complex processes run fast.
  9. Timeless – Good code is code that is good today, and good tomorrow. If it is worthless in a few days or few years, it isn’t good code.
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