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Oracle PL/SQL Best Practices, 2nd Edition by Steven Feuerstein

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Chapter 2. Real Developers Follow Standards

We software developers are a very privileged bunch. We don't have to work in dangerous environments, and our jobs aren't physically taxing (though carpal tunnel syndrome is always a threat). We are paid to think about things, and then to write down our thoughts in the form of code. This code is then used and maintained by others, sometimes for decades.

Given this situation, I believe we all have a responsibility to write code that can be easily understood and maintained (and, c'mon, let's admit our secret desires, admired) by the developers who follow in our footsteps. Look at this way: if you have a child, she might grow up to be a programmer. She might even put in time at one of your previous employers. She might actually end up having to maintain code that you wrote.

The choice is yours: avoid mortifying embarrassment either by never putting your name in your code, or by writing code that you would be proud to show to, share with, and inflict on your own flesh and blood.

Sadly, programmers are also often a fairly arrogant and anarchistic bunch. Part of the reason for this is that those people "out there" (nonprogrammers) tend to labor under the misconception that you have to be really smart to write software. Now, I am sure that all of my readers are really, really intelligent, don't get me wrong. But you don't need to be brilliant to write software. You need to be good at acting as a translator between normal people (users) and machines ...

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