Write Simple Code to Prevent Headaches Later

June 5, 2017

Consider the following code snippet:

someVar = false;

if ( anotherVar >= 1 ) {
 someVar = true;

Now, consider this rewrite:

someVar = ( anotherVar >= 1 );

Both snippets work as designed, so why is the second one better? It comes down to simplicity. The first snippet includes an if block. It would be possible for another programmer to add logic into that block that, while not modifying the final result of someVar, increases the complexity of the code. This makes it harder to maintain in the long run. The second snippet is very clear about what it does, and is more difficult to tack additional logic onto.