[Haskell-cafe] Readable Haskell

Sven Panne svenpanne at gmail.com
Sun Sep 20 15:06:38 UTC 2020

Am So., 20. Sept. 2020 um 14:20 Uhr schrieb MigMit <migmit at gmail.com>:

> [...] there are lots of places where long identifiers are distracting.
> Sometimes they make sense, but a lot of times they just don't.

I think a good rule of thumb is: The length of an identifier should be
proportional to the size of the scope in which it is valid.

As an example: If you design an API, names like "openBinaryFile",
"handleValidationError", "primaryDrawingContext" are a good idea. If you
have a simple 1-line or 2-line helper function, one-letter names can make
things vastly more readable, because you can see the "meat" of the code
more easily without drowning in 20-letter identifiers spilled over 5 lines.
So just using "ctx" or even "c" for "primaryDrawingContext" in a one-liner
can improve things. This is even more true when you have a type annotation
with long, descriptive type names for this function.

But all of this is very subjective, and in the end writing good, readable
code is a bit of an art. There are guidelines and tips on how to do this,
but there can never be hard and fast rules which will make everybody happy.
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