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I'm an idiot

Ever look at code you wrote several years ago and wince in pain?  I just found some that was so bad I had to look away.

Thursday, May 15, 2003

Take heart, hopefully we all improve with time.  Would it not be more frightening if you looked at code you wrote years ago and said "I did it better then."

Mike Gamerland
Thursday, May 15, 2003

Sometimes I look back at stuff, and think  - it's not quite as bad as I thought it was

I don't have  any of the early Windows programs that I wrote in C, but I know I would wince in pain if I saw them. Even then, it was a giant step backwards both in methodology and the quality of the Code (following the Petzold model) as compared to roll-your-own GUI programs that I did in Turbo Pascal/DOS.

S. Tanna
Thursday, May 15, 2003

Looking back at your old code and realizing how much you've learned since then, and how much your development skills have improved, is not completely a bad thing I think.

"Revel in your time, Roy.  A light that burns twice as bright burns half as long.  And your light has burn oh so bright, Roy".

- Eldon Tyrell, "Blade Runner".

Mitch & Murray (from downtown)
Thursday, May 15, 2003

And on the rather depressing other hand, I am almost afraid to look back, and see that I've not improved.

Seeing better code then doesn't scare me; that only means I let myself get lazy. But if I've learned nothing, I've gone nowhere, and much time was wasted.

Mike Swieton
Friday, May 16, 2003

Looking back at old code and wincing is something I've become used to, and like everyone else says, it's good to know you've learnt a thing or two.

What bothers me is when I look back at code that I've recently written (say in the past few months) and still have to wince, because I've been forced to deliver something in an unrealistic time frame by managers who have no idea about writing software.

I feel constantly trapped between getting my arse kicked for not meeting a deadline and producing the quality of solution I know I am capable of.

Friday, May 16, 2003

Funny thing ...

A former employer recently contacted me to extend a solution I had written for them a few years ago.  I agreed and they sent the source code over to me.

It really didn't take long at all to figure out why none of the developers there wanted the project ... yikes! 

It was awful.

Friday, May 16, 2003

I am generally proud of my earlier work.

However there was that time ten years ago when a product went out the door - the first I had written in C - that had an embarrassing liaison with a null pointer. Ouch.

Friday, May 16, 2003

I'm actually a bit humble when it comes to the code I write now.  Recently I shipped this comment as the header of one method (a string-parsing function which wraps lines to the screen width).

// I apologize for the following code.  It kind of grew on me.

Friday, May 16, 2003

I have the unfortunate tendency to capture my unrealized dreams in the most appallingly binary formats. Given time constraints, these inevitably end up as fragments of the real thing, which leaves code that is good 'in theory', but hard to maintain. Always fun for the maintainer to dig through half finished implementations. Although, I guess an argument could be made that in some ways all implementations are only half finished. (Especially in the minds of their creators).

Dustin Alexander
Friday, May 16, 2003

While there are plenty times when I do wince at my older code, has any else had the experience of looking back at previous code and thought "Wow. I did that? Cool."

Mark Hoffman
Friday, May 16, 2003

Yes and no...

Usually by the time I look back on something it is so ingrained as to be rendered mundane.  But point taken.

Friday, May 16, 2003

Unfortunately, my "Wow! I did that?" reactions are to code that I now have to figure out all over again, because I need to update it. I always think I over-comment things, until I have to revisit my code. :/

But mostly, my reaction to my old stuff is something along the lines of "aaagghkkkk... please don't torture me like this...".

Friday, May 16, 2003

I have wondered when looking back at old code if i
am really doing better now, or i am just doing it
differently and that i just think it is better.

Sunday, May 18, 2003

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