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Code Analysis - Testing & Debugging

Having a successful app development or software construction project is only possible with a well thought out plan. If you are working with a number of other developers, establishing things like what programming language to use and what style of coding you will adhere to is a must.

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Nearly 70 percent of consumers say they will stop engaging with an app or piece of software if it is constantly crashing or does not provide them with a user-friendly experience. This is why as a developer, you need to set aside enough time to both test and debug your code.

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The following are some of the things you need to consider when testing and debugging your code.

Inserting Print Statements

One of the most useful tools programmers have for debugging code is inserting print statements. However, if you have a number of different print statements in place, you may find it hard to keep up with all of them. In situations like this, using a logging system is essential.

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Popular programming languages like Python have large libraries that are designed to make logging much easier. Using print statements the right way allows you to inspect data values and variables in a hurry. Often times, a well placed print statement will help developers track the flow of a piece of code and identify any bugs that may exist.

Using Code Debuggers is a Good Idea

Most programmers use code debuggers in conjunction with the print statement methods. With a code debugger, you are able to go through your code execution line by line. A variety of programming languages have debuggers on the market with a number of different features.

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Many of the debuggers you find will allow you to look at graphical interfaces and execute arbitrary code in the right environment. For smaller projects, using a debugger may be a bit of overkill. However, there are many instances where debuggers can make large chunks of code more efficient and powerful.

Let a Linter Do the Work

In essence, a linter can be used to point out problems in your code before you even compile or run it. Using a lint program in your code editor will help you find and correct errors before they affect the functionality of the software or app you are constructing.

For larger projects, linters can help to reduce the time spent on debugging. If you are on a tight deadline and need to ensure your code is in top shape, then using one of these programs is a must. With a linter, you can find typos, syntactical errors and even incorrect data types with ease.

Learn How to Use Modularization

If the code you have compiled is poorly architected, then it can create bugs that are extremely hard to fix. This is why you need to focus on making your code easy to understand. When code is properly laid out, it will be much easier to find and fix bugs.

One of the best ways to make code easier to understand is by writing functions that only perform one task. If your code feature functions that handle a number of responsibilities, tracking down bugs and functionality issues will be nearly impossible.

The term modularization is used to describe software components that handle one job. While it will take some time and effort to learn how to use modularization effectively, it will be worth the effort.

Automated Tests Are Vital

As any programmer knows, adequately logging your code is the key to software and app development success - like using a program to help you with your Python syslog by Loggly.

If you are going to use modularization in your code, then also automated testing is essential. An automated test allows you to take the code you have written and see if it actually works.

If the program behavior does not match what is actually expected of the code, you will need to take a look at what is causing this issues. A unit test allows you to assess the functionality of class methods and single functions.

Many of the proponents of test-driven development use methods derived from the JUnit Library. There is also a Python version of this library referred to as PyUnit. Using the power of these automated and unit tests will help you compile accurate and functional code.

Rushing through the coding process is a recipe for disaster. Failing to use the tools at your disposal to find errors in your code and fix them will result in a number of problems. The last thing you want is to put out software or apps that don’t work properly due to the damage it can do to your reputation.