Code smells. I’ve mentioned “code smells” at work, only to discover that my coworkers didn’t know what I meant. It’s basically a diaper-changing metaphor: “If it stinks, change it.”
A code smell isn’t “awful code that makes you hold your nose.” Rather, it’s a simple indication that something may need to be changed. Quite often, you won’t notice a code smell until someone else describes it. This is what Kent Beck and Martin Fowler did in the Refactoring book: created a list of smells, and what to do about them.
Code Smells Specific to Objective-C
The book’s catalog of code smells relate to good practices of object-oriented programming. I’m going to start a series that is specific to Objective-C code smells. Here’s a tentative list to give you a preview:
- 9 Code Smells of Xcode Preprocessor Macros
- #imports Gone Wild! How to Tame File Dependencies
- 4 Ways Precompiled Headers Cripple Your Code
- Is Dot Notation in Objective-C 100% Pure Evil?
…or maybe not! I switched, see In Which I Embrace Dot Notation…
- Objective-C init: Why It’s Helpful to Avoid Messages to self
I think this’ll be interesting, and sometimes even controversial. (Dot notation, anyone?) So be sure to come back—subscribe to keep up with the latest postings!
- Refactoring: The Book that Changed Everything for Me
- Martin Fowler explains “code smell”
- Summary of code smells from the book, with the refactorings to fix them
Question: What common Objective-C practices have you encountered that you might consider code smells? Leave a comment below.
I think you’ve picked a great topic here. I know that there will be things that I will be able to learn from. I look forward to your next post.
Thanks for the encouragement, Cory! I hope you’ll also chime in with your own code smells.
I’m looking forward to your series. You have me curious about #4 :-)
Calling #4 a smell may be a stretch, we’ll see… :)
Just after reading that “Preprocessor use” may cause code smell I became instantly intrigued. Would you mind giving me a hint of what that might be?
Eimantas, here’s a hint: THHomePriceIndex.h :)
Thanks for quick reply.
Regarding the CPP – that’s not “use”. That’s “abuse” .)
Looking forward to your next post. – Mayur