Patterns of Construction

I’m a big advocate of setting out the key elements of the development process succinctly but unambiguously at the start of a software development project, particularly in cases where I have no prior history of working with the development team. Such process elements typically cover environments, coding standards, technical design and review requirements, source-code control strategy etc. Perhaps the most valuable area to cover are the basic patterns of construction (or Design Patterns), without this developers are left to their own devices in naming technical components and structuring code, which can be a serious issue with maintainability and standardisation. It is incredibly time expensive and de-motivating to address this after the fact. Instead a clear picture provided upfront can provide the development team with a strong reference covering 80% of the cases, the remainder can be addressed individually during technical design. The example below provides an example of a basic construction pattern which covers naming conventions and structural concerns. Following such a pattern makes the technical implementation predictable and should improve maintainability, the latter being a obligation to take seriously on consulting projects. My rule of thumb is to try and leave the org in a state a future me would consider acceptable.

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