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How to achieve code excellence

2024-04-24 | 1 views

career development productivity

Being able to solve problems is a very important part of being a developer, but we have all ran into the problem that when we go back to our code 2 months later it can seem quite cryptic. Unless of course your code is excellent!

In this blog I will go over my tricks to keep my code readable and the quality high!


In this blog I will go over the following concepts:

In the end I will go into why I think having a sustainable plan for yourself is important, since following all rules religiously most likely will end up having you not follow them at all anymore in the long-term.

Code splitting

We have all learnt initially that functions used so logic does not have to repeated, this of course is a very important use case for functions!

However functions can also greatly increase the readability of your code. Long if statements or big functions can become unreadable since a lot of context has to be remembered. While splitting it up in small readable and rememberable chunks makes it easier to understand.

This can be done for instace by changing a big if statement like person.age > 65 && person.nationality === 'NL' && person.working === true into a function by moving this if statement to a function and calling it ifEligibleForDiscount. This describes what you mean to do with this functionality and cleans up the code block of the function.

When this is done over an entire code base it can keep the code more readable especially when going back to it after a while since function names are often more descriptive than code.

Never nesting

Never nesting is the concept of keeping the layers within your code as low as possible. This is to remove the complexity of reading over what a function performs. This can be done both by early returns and code splitting. When too many layers are used it can be easy to lose oversight of which layer is currently used.

Early returns are the idea of instead of using if(x === true ) { some_logic } using if(x === false) { return } some_logic which does not add an extra layer of nesting.

I recommend watching the video from CodeAesthetic to know more!

Variable and function names

Naming in programming should describe what the variable will be used for or what the function should do. Renaming variables and functions after the program is functional is an important part of keeping everything nice and readable. Variable names should include their context and what they are used for.


Linting is an integral part of writing qualitative code. Using tools like eslint for javascript are amazing to achieve this task. It is important however to set the right linting tools and not be too nice on yourself when creating the configuration of this linter. Strict rules will reduce the speed at which you can write code but will in the longterm create better quality of code.


Comments are important for describing function or variables which need more context than can be given in a single name. If the rules above are adhered however comments should not be necessary for every function and can be written for more complex function. It is best practise to write comments for all your code, but a sustainable way if there is a time constraint is to at least write it for all complex functions where the context might be a little unclear later on.

Fix problem quick and dirty, then refactor

This is one of my favourite rules which I apply to almost all my problems. If there is a problem it is not a crime to create some code in the quick and dirty way to fix the problem. However the problem starts to arise when after the code works the steps to make the code of high quality and sustainable are not taken. It is very alluring to finish quickly and call it a day but the time investment to improve the code by using the rules described in this blog is most of the time minimal and will reduce time spend decyphering later.


I have had many points where I tried to follow all the rules when writing my code. In my perspective writing perfect code is very hard and time consuming and I do not think it is a sustainable goal for most developers. That is why I think it is an important rule to find what works and is easy to apply so the maximum value to time ratio can be achieved. The rules described in this document are minimal but they are easy to implement and thus will be easier to stick to, which in the development world is very important. There will be many people out there telling you how to do it better, and maybe they will be right. But in the end having good rules which you can stick to is the most important.

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