Thursday, February 07, 2008

40 sings if you are a lousy PHP programmer

This is something I prefer to call my "programming list of shame". Although having a formal university education with courses on software engineering, enterprise software architecture & database design I have been guilty of every single one of those things at one time or another. This is completely subjective & Eclipse oriented

You are a lousy PHP programmer if you

  1. don't comment your code properly with something like phpDoc

  2. don't see the need and/or benefits of a good programming IDE like Zend Studio or Eclipse PDT

  3. have never used some form of version control like Subclipse

  4. don't adopt some coding & naming standards and general conventions and stick to to them at least throughout the project

  5. don't use a consistent methodology

  6. don't escape and/or validate properly input or sql queries

  7. don't plan your application thoroughly before starting to code

  8. don't use test-driven development

  9. don't program & test with error reporting on

  10. don't see the benefits of a debugger

  11. don't refactor your code

  12. don't keep the different layers seperated using something like MVC

  13. don't know what these stand for: KISS, DRY, MVC, OOP, REST

  14. don't return content but echo or print it from your functions or classes

  15. have never seen the advantage of unit tests or testing in general

  16. return HTML, not data, strings, or objects.

  17. hard code messages and configuration parameters

  18. don't optimize your sql queries

  19. don't use __autoload

  20. don't allow intelligent error handling

  21. use $_GET instead of $_POST for any destructive actions

  22. don't know how to use regular expressions

  23. you've never heard of sql injection or cross-site scripting

  24. don't allow simple configuration, can be parameters passed to a class’s constructor, set/get methods called later, or constants defined at a runtime.

  25. don't understand the benefits and limitations of Object Oriented Programming

  26. misuse OOP / everything you write , no matter how small is OOP

  27. you think reusable software equals/requires your code to be OOP

  28. don't choose intelligent defaults

  29. don't have one single configuration file

  30. don't want the file contents to be seen, but give it a .inc extension instead of .php

  31. don't use a database abstraction layer

  32. don't keep it DRY, Don't repeat yourself. If you have to copy and paste or duplicate something your design may be off.

  33. don't make a function/class/method do just one thing and don't make them interact.

  34. don't try to take advantage of OOP specific features like abstract/interface classes, inheritage polymorphism & access modifiers.

  35. don't optimize your application design with established design patterns

  36. don't allow your user to define a base directory if you have multiple files and/or directories

  37. pollute the global namespace, one option is to prefix the functions in your library with a common string

  38. don't allow a table prefix when using database tables

  39. use a separate template engine

  40. don't take a look at established php frameworks for inspiration, most of them have advanced web dev concepts and good code