A Guide to Refactoring Large Functions by Robert Muth

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Software Engineer Robert Muth wrote this interesting article on refactoring large functions.

The article starts with providing ample motivation for using functions (or methods in a strictly object-oriented context). Apart from making code shareable and reusable, which is only a minor benefit of functions / methods, reasons for writing code as functions are:

  • giving a meaningful name to several lines of related code
  • readability
  • limiting visibility
  • lowering indentation levels
  • improving testability

The article goes on to describe several common cues indicating that extracting the code at hand to a function might be warranted. Some of these cues are:

  • loops
  • complex if-statements
  • logical cohesion (flag parameters)

Finally, the author shares some techniques and best practices for refactoring code with functions while making the code more testable in the process.

About the author: Bjoern
Independent IT consultant, entrepreneur

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