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Improving developer productivity and software quality via code reviews

Another cross-post, writing for my employer Zone, on the benefits of code reviews toward developer productivity, software quality and a supportive and learning-focused team culture.
Recent posts

Thoughts on "A Philosophy of Software Design"

I took a recommendation from the blog of Gergely Orosz on a recently released book on software architecture, "A Philosophy of Software Design" by John Ousterhout, purchased and have just finished reading it. In short, I'd second the recommendation - it's not a long book, but is packed with good, practical advice presented from the perspective of an academic, mostly based on his views of many implementations of projects by his students. What I particularly enjoyed about it was that it's a book that makes you think as you go... you aren't simply ticking off a list of things you agree with already. Gergely had a few reservations that he outlined in his post, most of which I also agree with, and I also had some of my own - but all in a postitive way as it made me think and question some practices I've used up to now and consider them from a different viewpoint.In the appendix, John lists 15 design principles that he describes fully in the book, which I'…

Practical Decisions on Testing: Using TDD

I think this will be the final post in this unplanned series on "Practical Decisions on Testing". Previously posts have covered:Considering a UnitCode coverage metricsTrading off value with difficultyIn this post I wanted to consider the topic of test driven development (TDD). It's a technique that tends to divide developers into two camps, those that swear by it, and those that don't touch it (even if they are on board with unit testing itself). Over the course of my career I've used it on occasion, and found some value, but on balance find I fall mostly into the "tests after" camp, and the method of using tests to drive the design of the code isn't something that's really become part of my programming workflow.In particular, going the full TDD approach where you write code that doesn't initially even compile isn't something I've found grabs me, perhaps due to my background in statically typed languages, primarily C#.A peer of mi…