list/tuple to dict...
donn at u.washington.edu
Thu Sep 16 19:16:24 CEST 2004
In article <roy-F19881.09301016092004 at reader1.panix.com>,
Roy Smith <roy at panix.com> wrote:
> aleaxit at yahoo.com (Alex Martelli) wrote:
> > Copy and paste is a BAD way to reuse software. Very, very bad. Anybody
> > with the least experience maintaining big programs will confirm.
> Absolutely agree.
> A while ago, I was working on a piece of code written by somebody who
> didn't believe in this. I found a bug and fixed it. Sometime later, we
> realized the fix was wrong and I went back to make an additional change.
> I was surprised when the file I was looking at appeared to be the
> original code. Where had my first change gone? We spent an afternoon
> looking through CVS logs, getting ourselves more and more convinced that
> CVS had somehow messed up.
> It turns out, the fix I made was in a huge function (100's of lines)
> which somebody had cut-and-pasted to make three versions which did
> almost identical things. And then they gave the functions almost
> identical names, along the lines of:
> sendMessageToServerWithAlertCondition ()
> sendMessageToServerWithErrorCondition ()
> sendMessageToServerWithOtherCondition ()
> So, yeah, Alex is right. Don't do that.
Sure, don't do _that_. But do you think anyone might be
able to come up with cases where software has been unnecessarily
fragile because of a compulsive desire to avoid repeating a
line of similar code anywhere? Don't do that, either!
Donn Cave, donn at u.washington.edu
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