Programming Tips

General tips on how to write good code

Naming A Function

Picking good function names is an essential part of writing good code. Consider the following recommendations when you name your function.

Choose meaningful function names

When you name your function, you should be clear on what it does. For example, the function get(studentId, subject) doesn't have a meaningful function name, and therefore, it is not clear what it does. It might be getting the student's subject grade or getting their enrollment status. A better name would be getStudentGrade(studentId, subject), as it precisely communicates what the function does.

Don't make the function name too long

Take care not to make a function name too long. For example, checkStudentFailOrPassOrMeritOrDistinction(mark) is an unnecessarily long function name. The longer the name is, the harder it gets to remember and the more space it takes on the computer screen.

Don't make the function name too short

Conversely, making a function name too short can also confuse readers. For example, checkFPMD(mark) is a bad function name as it isn't immediately obvious what 'FPMD' means.

Use the name that everyone understands.

Your function name should be understandable by everyone who reads your code. For example, an obscure function name like DeathStar() might be amusing to you, but the name doesn't communicate its purpose and can cause confusion for other developers who read your code.

Pick one convention for naming operations

Stick to one convention for naming operations that do the same thing. For example, if you name the function to get a student's name getStudentName(), you should not use a different verb in the function name to get a student's grade (e.g. retrieveStudentGrade()).

Avoid using the same word for two purposes

For example, don't keep using add when you want to put a group of items into a collection if you already named it on a addition of two numbers. Use insert or append instead.