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Ace the Programming Interview: 160 Questions and Answers for Success by Edward Guiness

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Chapter 6

Code Quality

Most technical interviewers have a view on what is important in software development. They universally agree that code quality is vitally important, but the exact definition of quality is a bit less clear. Some put code clarity ahead of efficiency, and some put efficiency first. Others say that correctness is paramount, with clarity and efficiency vying for second place, and some interviewers say none of those things matter if the customer is unhappy.

At another level you will find some interviewers concerned with the layout and consistency of code. Choosing good names for variables and classes is a common concern, and many put their trust in the SOLID principles (if you've not heard of SOLID it is explained later in this chapter).

In this chapter you will find questions covering all these angles. These are the questions that technical interviewers use to assess your understanding of what code quality means. It's an opportunity to demonstrate some important things, specifically that you:

  • Can read and comprehend someone else's code
  • Can spot potentially bad code
  • Have a view on what constitutes good code
  • Can articulate reasons why code is good or bad

Programmers with any experience will recognize the importance of the first point—reading and comprehending code written by someone else. As a programmer, relatively rarely are you asked to write a lot of code from scratch. Far more commonly, you're asked to maintain or add features to an existing code base. Reading ...

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