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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • Strangely, I agree with Graham's point. Sparse, on-point comments are wonderful. Code that's too tricksy to grok should be rewritten. From my own experience, I find that my perl vocabulary has shrunk while making the programs easier for me to pick up months later. Also, debuggers work on code, not comments. That's to say, a reader needs to grok the code not what the comments say about the code. And the debugger is an excellent way to understand how the code really works. I recall exploring both Tk an

    • Code that's too tricksy to grok should be rewritten.

      Sometimes code needs to be complicated. Some tasks are tough and impossible to oversimplify and that can justify comments. That being said, shoving that code into an appropriately named subroutine should make it easier.

      However, there is one thing that code frequently cannot reveal and that is why something is being done. Maybe it's easy to see that the clone of the customer object does not include their Social Security Number, but that doesn't tell you why. Is it a bug, something to help protect privacy or just not bothering to clone unecessary fields? Any of those reasons could be valid, but the code could be useless as a point of explanation.