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Coding Standards are a set of guidelines for programming languages. Developers follow them while developing software using that particular language. These guidelines recommend coding styles, best practices, and methods to build robust and secure software. Normally coding standards recommend file organization, indentation, comments, declarations, naming conventions, programming standards, programming rule of thumb, architectural best practices, etc.

Why following these guidelines are important?

  • It enhances the efficiency of software
  • It minimizes the complexity of code
  • The code is easy to maintain with consistent programming
  • It helps to easily locate and correct the bugs in software
  • It makes your code clean and concise
  • It reduces the development cost

Here we have compiled some most common and extremely important Coding Conventions you should follow while creating a CodeIgniter application.

Common Conventions:

  1. Write clean quality code
  2. Understand the project before jumping on a development task
  3. If a function is being used more than once, create a Helper for it
  4. Createreusablefunctions
  5. Load a js file only where it’s required, instead of loading it globally

Project/ Folder/ Directory Name Conventions:

A project/ folder/ directory name should:

Not contain a white space between the words

e.g., Write “ProjectName” instead of “Project Name”

Be short and simple

Be unique, make sure it doesn’t match with any earlier created folder names. 

File Name Conventions:

There can be multiple files in a project. Every file has its own usage. A developer can find a specific file with ease if you create a file with the following standards: 

  • A file should be in its own specific folder. Keep each file in its intended folder created considering its type and usage.
  • A file name should be in a camel-case format, e.g., fileName.type
  • A file name should not contain any white space, special character, or digit.
  • A file name should be meaningful and reflect its functionality.

Class and Function Name Convention:

  • A class name should start with a letter, and the first letter of a class name must be Capital.
  • Like a class name, a function name too, should start with a letter and follow camel case format.

Variable & Constant Name Convention:

  • A variable name should be short and meaningful.
  • Global variables and constants should be written in all caps.
  • Use ‘_’ should be used as a word separator.

Comments:

Comments are essential to make the source code easily understandable.

  • Every function should contain an explanatory comment.
  • Comments should be clear and concise

PHP Code Tags:

You should use <?php ?> to delimit the PHP code, instead of its shorthand version <? ?>.

Function Calls:

  • You should call a function with no spaces between any word of the function name, the opening parentheses, and the first parameter.
  • There should be a space between the comma and each parameter.
  • Keep no space between the last parameter, closing parentheses, and semicolon.

Example:

<?php  

  echo testFunc( 5, 6);  

  function testFunc( $num1, $num2) {  

    $val = $num1 + $num2;  

    return $val;  

  }  

?> 

Make Functions Re-entrant:

Do not keep a static variable that prevents the function from being re-entrant.

Short Methods or Functions:

Keep methods limited to a single page of code.

Conclusion:

These common coding standards and guidelines will accelerate your development process and enhance the efficiency of your software when followed properly.

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