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Bill Roper's Journal
Thud, Thud, Thud 
14th-Aug-2009 07:37 pm
I hate religious arguments. That said, I object to getting an e-mail that says, "Hi, we're going to reformat all of your carefully formatted source code, because we don't like your formatting style."

I understand that I'm not formally working on that particular project at the moment, but it still rankles.
Comments 
15th-Aug-2009 01:43 am (UTC)
Do I dare mention that in Python, formatting and indentation *is* part of the syntax? Yeah, I'm still trying to wrap my brain around that one.

15th-Aug-2009 03:14 am (UTC)
Someone must have been overly fond of COBOL when they developed Python....
15th-Aug-2009 10:57 am (UTC)
Then there's the programming language Whitespace", where the formatting and indentation are the whole of the syntax. It's a very difficult language to read.
15th-Aug-2009 01:49 pm (UTC)
Ugh. I had quite enough of that when I was programming FORTRAN on punch cards. I'm glad to be shut of that.

Personally I find a pretty printer and configure it the way I like it, and use it on my codebase once in a while.
15th-Aug-2009 11:20 am (UTC)
Wait -- they're being paid to waste time and risk introducing bugs into a working codebase? Wierd.
15th-Aug-2009 02:15 pm (UTC)
The group has had formatting wars for a decade. Many of them are religious issues (K&R vs. brace matching -- and I admit that I simply find K&R allows me better control of where I'm putting my white space).

But, you see, by being consistent (and, in my opinion, consistently the way that this other guy prefers it), we will produce a better code base.

*sigh*
15th-Aug-2009 08:23 pm (UTC)
Some people's styles are drifting where I work; we used to match and now they are starting to differ. But that can be good, as it means I can look at a part of the code and tell someone edited it after I did and introduced the bug. (And ask them why they thought that was right.)

Also, language changes cause issues. Which is preferable:
[NSThread detachNewThreadSelector: @selector(auth:) toTarget: self withObject: SSID];

or

[NSThread detachNewThreadSelector : @selector(auth :) toTarget : self withObject : SSID];



15th-Aug-2009 11:19 pm (UTC)
Well, consistent -is- better, in that if everybody uses the same system then everybody understands it better. But what -he's- saying is,

"Your formatting is so clear and understandable that I can easily understand it and can convert it to this other system without any chance of confusing anyone."

But if it's that clear, what's the point? :-)
16th-Aug-2009 07:14 pm (UTC)
I've gone through about 4 different styles over the years. For the most part, as long as my editor (vi) will support it without a lot of contortions, I don't care as long as there is consistency.

I'm even fine with different levels of consistency across the same code base as long as a given file is internally consistent.

What I'm not fine with is having to run my revision control system's "blame" command multiple times just to find out who was responsible for a given bug.
16th-Aug-2009 07:44 pm (UTC)
When I've worked in files that other people are primarily responsible for, I generally try to use the indenting style that they do. The favor is not always returned. *sigh*
16th-Aug-2009 07:50 pm (UTC)
These people are usually called zealots. Sometimes they're also called other names too.
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