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Ben Halpern
Ben Halpern

Posted on

What are your worst coding habits?

Is it bad commit messages, getting distracted by social media, commenting out tests?

Let’s hear it all.

Discussion (168)

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selbekk profile image
selbekk

I write git status at least 4000 times a day, for no reason whatsoever.

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learnbyexample profile image
Sundeep

how about ls and clear

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huyduy profile image
Huy Duy

You can use Ctrl + L instead.

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titivermeesch profile image
PlayBossWar

Doing this all day long when I'm working for no reason, I don't know why actually

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jcoelho profile image
José Coelho

Yep that's me. I even write git status after committing just to make sure 😅

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learnbyexample profile image
Sundeep

That has actually helped me once, I'd forgotten to git add some files

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chin98edwin profile image
chin98edwin

And also git branch after git checkout just to make sure I'm on the right branch… 😂

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kaddkaka profile image
kaddkaka

My prompt reflects which branch I'm on, super helpful!

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glaaki profile image
Sean Porter

at least alias it to gst!

also: me too

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cjbrooks12 profile image
Casey Brooks

With as much as I check git status, I don't have time for a 3-letter alias! gs is all I can afford 😜

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a0s profile image
Anton Osenenko

And gpr for git pull --rebase

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pmsuntuwarg profile image
Mahesh Sunuwar

Most of the time, git log follows git status in my case. :P

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kaddkaka profile image
kaddkaka

tig gives me more information, more concisely. Try it out :)

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khoa0319 profile image
Khoa Huỳnh

Underrated

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kiro112 profile image
Jairo Malanay

Is it bad ?
Im also guilty of this one + ls and clear

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bhupesh profile image
Bhupesh Varshney 👾

Been there
😂😭

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haqqer profile image
ahmad_haqqer

me too dude

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highcenburg profile image
Vicente G. Reyes

This sounds like a good practice😂

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gokulkrishh profile image
Gokulakrishnan Kalaikovan

haha me too. So i added a alias as s => git status. Lol lazy me

More shortcuts like this in here github.com/gokulkrishh/dotfiles

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alanmbarr profile image
Alan Barr

Never taking the time to learn hotkeys. Not reaching out to a second set of eyes before spending too much time on something. Not doing enough design up front.

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ben profile image
Ben Halpern Author

Are you me?

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glaaki profile image
Sean Porter

I use vim for basically everything & I can't remember how to do macros without looking it up. I think just generalize this to "not learning your tools effectively" & I totally agree.

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jonathanspeek profile image
Jonathan Speek

This is super relatable.

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ronsoak profile image
ronsoak

I rewrite other people’s code to my extremely high standard so I can understand it. Such a time waste.

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noreading profile image
Dominik

I know this far too well. There is this strong feeling of „You can’t leave it like it is, when you know it.“ but in the end ... it would most likely run for ages without any issues if we wouldn’t rewrite it. And maybe nobody would ever touch it again. :-)

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ben profile image
Ben Halpern Author

I’m sure this thread will contain much worse habits than that! 😂

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helenanders26 profile image
Helen Anderson

Haha! you are far more patient than I am!

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hugoliconv profile image
Hugo • Edited on

I do not write unit tests 😔

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otr500miles2go profile image
DIANE GAYDEN

I knew if I kept reading I'd find my bad habit.

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jnschrag profile image
Jacque Schrag

Same! I've never written a test. I know that I should, but... ¯_(ツ)_/¯

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christopherkade profile image
Christopher Kade

Small plug, but I wrote an introduction to unit testing if that could help any of you 😃

dev.to/christopherkade/introductio...

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jnschrag profile image
Jacque Schrag

This is great, thank you!

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mandaputtra profile image
Manda Putra

Dateline !== No test, or just lrave like this

Agile !== No test

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yashints profile image
Yaser Adel Mehraban

Not reading enough docs, whether it's a framework or API

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reddyaravind178 profile image
aravind_reddy

Totally relatable

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highcenburg profile image
Vicente G. Reyes

Stare at my editor -> search for help in duckduckgo -> open social media -> change music on spotify😂

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crongm profile image
Carlos Garcia ★

Same. ❤

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bhupesh profile image
Bhupesh Varshney 👾

That's literally me every single day 😂😂

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helenanders26 profile image
Helen Anderson

Being too lazy to turn off 'helpful' system settings, like the one that autocompletes a closing bracket. I used to end up adding a closing bracket myself and then having too many so had to hit backspace to get rid of one.

Now that that has become muscle memory, whenever I'm not using that tool I hit backspace on autopilot even though there is no 'helpful' closing bracket to get rid of.

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moopet profile image
Ben Sinclair

I do this all the time!
It's all muscle memory now.

The other way the IDE gets in my way is when I want to add a closing bracket or parenthesis but my cursor is already immediately before one and the editor treats it as if they're the same - so I think I've added enough, but oh no.

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helenanders26 profile image
Helen Anderson

Ugh. Instant rage quit.

There are also some strange moments when the cursor just vanishes completely and I don't know where I am anymore.

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ben profile image
Ben Halpern Author

Ah yes, been there.

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flexdinesh profile image
Dinesh Pandiyan

Step 1: Spot a code smell
Step 2: Add a // TODO comment
Step 3: Never get back to it

Repeat.

This is the story of my dev life 😔

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foresthoffman profile image
Forest Hoffman

If you're a VS Code user, checkout the Todo Tree extension.

It's a nice alternative to searching in all files for // TODO or // DEBUG before commiting!

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reebboot profile image
John Dev

Good tip 😉

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briankephart profile image
Brian Kephart

Not using feature branches.

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ben profile image
Ben Halpern Author

This was me until I worked with folks who set great examples. I eventually learned better habits.

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glaaki profile image
Sean Porter

Not sure I'd agree with this one, depends on what you're trying to accomplish.

Committing directly to trunk has its benefits, everyone gets the changes immediately but you just need to make sure that the changes are self-contained enough to not break anything.

I used to think this was the way to go too until I read Continuous Delivery
all the way through.

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kayis profile image
K (he/him)

Trunk based devlopment ftw.

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stearm profile image
Stefano Armenes

You should try git flow :)

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htphuongse profile image
Phuong Huynh

haha, you should try to fix it soon

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ddhogan profile image
Donna Hogan
  • git push --force on a regular basis
  • using VSC to open dot files and not taking the time to learn vim or nano, etc
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selbekk profile image
selbekk • Edited on

My git alias for that command is git fush 😄

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colorcodedcode profile image
Robert Schaap

I need that in my life. I'm an obsessive compulsive interactive rebaser.

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ben profile image
Ben Halpern Author

I don’t think the second is a bad habit. There’s no special reason one needs to be using bin or nano imo.

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ericcurtin profile image
Eric Curtin

I think all Unix/Linux developers should know vim. Because vi or vim is almost always installed on these variants. Sure for local development a UI is great, a very useful tool! But for editing files on remote machines, the ability to ssh to a remote machine and make a quick change is very important.

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citizen428 profile image
Michael Kohl

If you start using —force-with-lease instead the habit becomes quite a bit less bad.

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Nick Taylor (he/him)

My git alias, pf,is just for that, alias.pf push --force-with-lease. More here 😉

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rhymes profile image
rhymes

Sometimes I struggle and go for the longer route instead of just focusing on the quick fix.

I often set a breakpoint and learn how code works from there instead of just looking at the documentation.

A part of me wants to fix everything but I've become much more pragmatic over time 😂

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kayis profile image
K (he/him)

I try to do the right thing first.

Often I fail because of missing information, then I do a bunch of quick fixes second.

Then after the fixes built up too much, I do a rewrite as it should be and everything is good.

The second part often happens because I only find the missing information after I tried enough fixes.

Dumb problem and probably unsolvable 😒

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maestromac profile image
Mac Siri

Being too obsessed with code perfection instead of just shipping the feature.

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kayis profile image
K (he/him)

Prettier and refmt helped me so much with this

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moopet profile image
Ben Sinclair

I still tend to jump in and start coding my first idea. I tell myself it's a proof of concept or that I'm experimenting with different ideas but too often I just end up going with it and not putting the effort in to find a better solution.
I do this even if I have time to plan the project out, because I've worked in tight deadline agencies for so long it's become a habit that's hard to break.

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andreasbergqvist profile image
Andreas Bergqvist • Edited on

This. I guess sometimes its also a strength. Atleast I tell myself...

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kayis profile image
K (he/him)

Do it with TLA+ instead! 🙃

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dance2die profile image
Sung M. Kim • Edited on

Confession:
TFS (Team foundation) lets you commit your code without a message. I sometimes commit without a message...

And I reformat others' code.

The worst offender is always Googling for simple tasks such adding simple HTML elements such as adding CSS link tags and script tags... (I wonder if it's just me not knowing how to add them out of memory 🤔)

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t4rzsan profile image
Jakob Christensen

We moved all our code from TFVC to TFS Git which I can highly recommend. You get the best of both worlds (TFS backlog and project control together with Git version control). And you will never commit without a message again 😉

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dance2die profile image
Sung M. Kim

Wow 😮
Thanks, Jacob.
I wasn't aware it was possible to migrate to TFS Git and keep all the history.

I will check it out~

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ben profile image
Ben Halpern Author

No commit message is such an odd thing to me.

I also always good css link tags 😂

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dance2die profile image
Sung M. Kim

git way of forcing a message should be how all VCS should be IMHO.

I also always good css link tags 😂
😂 👊

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elmuerte profile image
Michiel Hendriks

Not writing (and updating) documentation explaining intent and purpose.

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pedrommarquesm profile image
Pedro Marques

I work in a small team (2 front-end devs), and my co-worker is a bit picky about documenting every function, class, method, etc etc.
But sometimes all he documents is something a function name tells it upfront, I really think there's no purpose in doing something like:

/** This function transforms lower case string to uppper case **/
function lowerCaseToUpper(str...);

If you declare functions and variables with intuitive names, sometimes there's no need to explain them :)

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bytenaija profile image
Everistus Olumese

It is called self-documenting functions for a reason right?

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pedrommarquesm profile image
Pedro Marques

yup... unless that function transforms the string using some alien computation, there's no need for that

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bsatrom profile image
Brandon Satrom

So many, here are a few that come to mind...

  • git add .
  • git commit -m {same message as the last commit, but I forgot something and don’t feel like writing a new message}
  • git push origin master
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mandaputtra profile image
Manda Putra

Im still use git add . 🤣

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daanwilmer profile image
Daan Wilmer

git commit --amend could work, although it would require a sinful git push -f if you've already pushed it.

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chiangs profile image
Stephen E. Chiang

I get debug/Refactor/develop creep. Often I'm working on one thing and I notice something that can be fixed rewritten or moved somewhere so that it can be reused... Or I suddenly decide to stub out something for later later. Sure, it's stuff that had to be done at some point, but hard to explain or justify when you list hours to tasks for a single component and for some reason a component was finished, plus 2 stubbed, plus one refactored, and a new service was created. 🤪

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Eugene Karataev

It's hard for me to work with poorly written legacy code.
From one side I want to rewrite a module I'm working on to meet quality standards. But from other side usually the module is connected with other modules in an unpredicable spaghetti way, so refactoring might be a very deep rabbit hole. And there are always deadlines.
So my bad habit is procrastinating when I face such problems. I need to get a cup of coffee or scroll through twitter for 5 minutes before I can return to the work 😂

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Bennett Hardwick

Writing code that "just works" when I'm feeling tired.

I don't have the effort to think critically about what I'm writing and follow good practices when I'm exhausted or sleepy (generally after work when I'm working on side projects). Its akin to reading through drunk texts when I see what I what I committed the night before!

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andyhaskell profile image
&y H. Golang (he/him)

Probably overanalysis. I've got an eye for detail thinking about edge cases, but that has a tendency to bog me down before I start writing code for the normal case that I could then iterate on, which I'm trying to work on

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crongm profile image
Carlos Garcia ★ • Edited on

This is what I came to post. I can spend up to an hour checking if there's something in the code base that can be reused for the task I have at hand, and then thinking about how it can be reused, adapted, or modified for different cases. And sometimes it's just easier to write a simple function or method to deal with the problem.

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perigk profile image
Periklis Gkolias

Using mouse when the keyboard can do the job in one third of the time

Stupid names in variables

Not using a git prompt

Windows 😊😊

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kayis profile image
K (he/him)

Coming from years of RTS and FPS gaming, often the mouse is simply qick enough 🤖

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stephanie profile image
Stephanie Handsteiner

I don't write tests.

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kayis profile image
K (he/him)

Me neither.

The problem is often, that only code fails that couldn't be tested automatically anyway. (In app purchases, etc.)

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denmch profile image
Den McHenry

I do a lot of Razor templating (C# with HTML), and when I do something dependent on an external API (e.g., an Instagram widget), I usually wrap it in a try-catch block without handling the exception. I usually just print an HTML comment like, <!— Something went wrong with the Instagram widget. —>.

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lbonanomi

Finding an exciting library/package/technique and then prowling for problems that my new toy will fix.

Never going back and removing the shell pipes and system calls after the prototype worked.

parsing argv in main.

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Ben Holmes

For me, the worst habit comes out most when I'm trying to help others through problems in their code: learning when to step back and look for other solutions.

Just the other night, I got sucked into an 80 reply Slack conversation about a bug in someone's Heroku build. A lot of those messages came from my own misunderstanding in the build steps of their app and how Heroku handles deployment. After reaching a dead end pulling from my own knowledge, I did a quick crawl through GitHub to find similar issues to his own, and we soon found the culprit. Basically, I found that even when I think I understand an issue with a hacky way to solve it, it's always worth an Internet search to find the best solution.

It's really hard to find that balance of when to look for help versus when I should go with my gut, but I'm always working on it!

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Bos Eriko Reyes

Using Facebook's messenger when I'm coding. I can't let go of this one. I think it's because I isolate myself too much. I don't go out. Not at all. I don't use Facebook (I only use messenger, I don't have a Facebook). I use Twitter to see Feed related to coding as well. So I just can't let go of messenger. I need to talk to people. But I consider it a bad habit because I keep it open while coding. It will probably be healthier to just use Messenger when I'm not coding.

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PlayBossWar

I'm feeling this too. I talk to people but I think it's a huge waste of time. Like serious I'm coding 12h a day at a regular base but I'm feeling like I could do the 12h work in 6h if I close social media

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yamalight profile image
Tim Ermilov • Edited on

Using "up" arrow key in terminal to find a command instead of typing it.
I know I've used it already! 🤦‍♂️

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lbonanomi profile image
lbonanomi • Edited on
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kaddkaka profile image
kaddkaka

Use ctrl-r to search for the command in your history instead

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yamalight profile image
Tim Ermilov

I know and use that frequently, but man - that up button won't leave me alone 😂

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rapidnerd profile image
George Marr

If I get a bug in X project that I can't figure out for a while I'll jump to another project and work on that one until I get another bug that I can't figure out for a while then I'll jump back to the original project sort that one out, and back and forth

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Karl N. Redman

porn

however you define porn these days.... it's a distraction. If your porn is hours of netflix, ok. But that is potentially a bad habit. Basically everything that isn't productive is bad -right?

I disagree with this concept. IMHO people need to do various things in order to be productive at 'something'. I think there's some science behind this but meh, look that up on your own time.... I have 1 year to catch up on free BBC Dr. Who episodes via some darkweb torrent somewhere...

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Tommy May III • Edited on

Never doing the bandaid solution and always engineering things to a fault. This doesn't sound like too bad of a thing but trust me it's okay to put on the bandaid sometimes. I would have saved many hours if I would have put the bandaid solution on some features that my project owners didn't even want a few weeks / months later.