Code Review During Development

From small data analysis scripts to large simulation software, quality software is essential to quality research. Code readability, maintainability and extensibility are key to research outputs that can be reproduced and built upon.

But how can you assess the readability of your code? Have someone else read it! Whether your are an advanced programmer or a beginner, code reviews will greatly improve the quality of your software by giving you access to human feedback on your code and programming practices. Code reviews are also opportunities for knowledge transfer. Whether you participate as a reviewer or reviewee, code reviews are opportunities to learn from your colleagues .. or teach them a few tricks!

This website aims at providing a clear, opinionated workflow for code reviews among researchers in academia. It is designed to be accessible by researchers at all levels, from research students to senior professors, whether they are new to programming or software engineering experts.

Getting Started

Please see this page for an overview of how you can get started with code review.

Resources

Why code reviews?

Code review is standard practice in the software industry, as well as open source software communities. It is, however, very rare in academia. Very generally, we believe that developers of research software, at every level or career stage, would greatly benefit from regular human feedback on the code they write. On an individual level, this would provide effective learning opportunities and raise the quality of the programs they write. On a collective level, making code review a standard practice among research software developer would generally raise the quality of software-based research as a whole, bringing the development of quality software at the core of a researcher’s routine.