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Cover image for Code Smell 152 - Logical Comment
Maxi Contieri ⭐⭐⭐
Maxi Contieri ⭐⭐⭐

Posted on • Originally published at maximilianocontieri.com

Code Smell 152 - Logical Comment

Code Smell 152 - Logical Comment

Code Smell 152 - Logical Comment

Temporary hacks might be permanent

TL;DR: Don't change code semantics to skip code.

Problems

  • Readability

  • Non-Intention Revealing

Solutions

  1. If you need a temporary hack, make it explicit

  2. Rely on your source control system

Context

Changing code with a temporary hack is a very bad developer practice.

We might forget some temporary solutions and leave them forever.

Sample Code

Wrong

if (cart.items() > 11 && user.isRetail())  { 
  doStuff();
}
doMore();
// Production code

// the false acts to temporary skip the if condition
if (false && cart.items() > 11 && user.isRetail())  { 
  doStuff();
}
doMore();

if (true || cart.items() > 11 && user.isRetail())  {
// Same hack to force the condition
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Right

if (cart.items() > 11 && user.isRetail())  { 
  doStuff();
}
doMore();
// Production code

// Either if we need to force or skip the condition
// we can do it with a covering test forcing
// real world scenario and not the code

testLargeCartItems() {}

testUserIsRetail() {}
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Detection

[X] Semi-Automatic

Some linters might warn us of strange behavior.

Tags

  • Comments

Conclusion

Separation of concerns is extremely important in our profession.

Business logic and hacks should always be apart.

Relations

Credits

Photo by Belinda Fewings on Unsplash

Thanks @Ramiro Rela for this tip


You might not think that programmers are artists, but programming is an extremely creative profession. It's logic-based creativity.

John Romero


This article is part of the CodeSmell Series.

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