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  Code Decay  (Read 2773 times)
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Offline Breakfast

Senior Devvie

for great justice!

« Posted 2004-03-16 08:51:42 »

Here is a scenario I have just experienced:

Write a piece of code. Test that it works in a few cases. Decide it's fine and any problems will come out in final testing.

Go on leave for a week.

Come back to work and find a testing report that states there is a problem with the code in question. When I look at the source I can see immediately a bug which means that not only does it not work, there is no way it ever could have.

Does anyone else suffer from this phenomenon where untouched code appears to decay if you leave it alone? Does source-code have a half-life? Where do the other commands and characters go?
Offline Herkules

Senior Devvie

Friendly fire isn't friendly!

« Reply #1 - Posted 2004-03-16 08:55:49 »


Yes, this is a very common phenomenon.

HARDCODE    --     DRTS/FlyingGuns/JPilot/JXInput  --    skype me: joerg.plewe
Offline cfmdobbie

Senior Devvie

Medals: 1

Who, me?

« Reply #2 - Posted 2004-03-16 09:12:25 »

You can extend the half-life of source code by the addition of comments and documentation, but anything not touched for six months will become unusuable - no amount of supplementary diagrams or presentations will get you through that barrier.

Hellomynameis Charlie Dobbie.
Games published by our own members! Check 'em out!
Legends of Yore - The Casual Retro Roguelike
Offline Jeff

JGO Coder

Got any cats?

« Reply #3 - Posted 2004-03-16 16:28:10 »

The converse is that anything continually touched for a year or two will become unusable Smiley

if you have control over your environment and proper back-ups then code should not deteriorate if it isn't used.  back when I was in college the CPSR newsletter had this to say (and I've always liked the quote"

"The difference between programs and elevators is that elevators break down if they aren't maintained while programs break down if they are."

Got a question about Java and game programming?  Just new to the Java Game Development Community?  Try my FAQ.  Its likely you'll learn something!
Offline nonnus29

Senior Devvie

Giving Java a second chance after ludumdare fiasco

« Reply #4 - Posted 2004-03-16 20:09:32 »

Welcome to my hell... a 33 million line vertical app that is 35 years old....

Angry Embarrassed Lips Sealed :-/
Offline Orangy Tang

JGO Kernel

Medals: 57
Projects: 11

Monkey for a head

« Reply #5 - Posted 2004-03-16 21:31:16 »

Where do the other commands and characters go?

I don't know, but its probably the same place all my lost packets end up. They're probably piling up around leaky servers all around the world...

[ - Play Growth Spurt, Rescue Squad and Snowman Village ] [ Rebirth - game resource library ]
Offline princec

« JGO Spiffy Duke »

Medals: 1033
Projects: 3
Exp: 20 years

Eh? Who? What? ... Me?

« Reply #6 - Posted 2004-03-17 06:51:59 »

They hang out in the back streets, along with my odd socks, plotting world domination.

Cas Smiley

Offline Breakfast

Senior Devvie

for great justice!

« Reply #7 - Posted 2004-03-17 12:42:38 »

Damn it! They're drawing out those plans with all my lost biros!
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