Re: [dwm] dijkstra quote

From: Charlie Kester <>
Date: Wed, 7 May 2008 17:47:16 -0700

* Christoph Lohmann <> [2008-05-07 23:48:20 +0200]:

>Good evening.
>Am Wed, 7 May 2008 14:34:19 -0700 (PDT)
>schrieb mikshaw <>:
>> I find it blindingly bizarre that programmers, who by definition
>> should be logical thinkers, could be even slightly influenced toward
>> thinking that lines of code are directly proportional to quality of
>> code. The concept is ridiculous to a ridiculous degree.
>Then there is a need for a new productivity index. Any suggest-

With respect, focusing on lines of code is the wrong perspective.
It doesn't matter if you see that number as an achievement or as
an expense.

If you make reducing LOC your primary goal, you end up writing
Python or Ruby.

I want:

- small executables
- simple, clean user interfaces (do one thing and do it well)
- good performance

When measuring smallness, it's important to include any shared
libraries or runtime environments in the calculation. Many Python
programs are only superficially small. (You could say the same
thing about a bash script in comparison to a Bourne shell script.)

I want the program's speed to be fast enough to meet my needs. If
it can be made faster without compromising any of the other goals,
so much the better. (But sometimes a script is good enough, even if
it does spend time exec'ing subprocesses. It's worth some time to
ponder why that is so.)

I also want:

- elegant, maintainable code

I won't try to define elegance. Luckily I don't have to. I've read
some of your code, and it's obvious that you already get it. :-)
Received on Thu May 08 2008 - 02:47:25 UTC

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