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Jani Hartikainen's Blog:
A simple way to make your code better: Stop adding more parameters
Nov 12, 2009 @ 11:19:08

Jani Hartikainen offers a simple suggestion for making your code better - stop adding more parameters.

You need to add some new functionality to your function or class. Let's say you need to remove all objects stored, but optionally also call a method on them. It's pretty simple, isn't it? Let's just add a parameter to removeAllObjects! If you make it true, the additional method is called, otherwise not. Except it's not really such a good idea at all...

He points out that there's nothing wrong with parameters, it's their overuse that can cause the issues - if, in using them, it's unclear what they're doing, don't use them. He includes a few rules for making good use of parameters: less is good, relationship to the function, parameter order importance and using the language's parameter handling to your advantage.

tagged: parameters opinion better code