Code Smell 102 - Arrow Code

Code Smell 102 - Arrow Code

Maxi Contieri

Published on Nov 15, 2021

2 min read

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Nested IFs and Elses are very hard to read and test

TL;DR: Avoid nested IFs. Even Better: Avoid ALL IFs

Problems

  • Readability

Solutions

  1. Extract Method

  2. Combine Boolean Conditions

  3. Remove accidental IFs

Context

In procedural code, it is very common to see complex nested ifs. This is more related to scripting than object-oriented programming.

Sample Code

Wrong

if (actualIndex < totalItems)
    {
      if (product[actualIndex].Name.Contains("arrow"))
      {
        do
        {
          if (product[actualIndex].price == null)
          {
            // handle no price
          }
          else
          {
            if (!(product[actualIndex].priceIsCurrent()))
            {
              // add price
            }
            else
            {
              if (!hasDiscount)
              {
                // handle discount
              }
              else
              {
                // etc
              }
            }
          }
          actualIndex++;
        }
        while (actualIndex < totalCounf && totalPrice < wallet.money);
      }
      else
        actualIndex++;
    }
    return actualIndex;
  }
foreach (products as currentProduct)
  addPriceIfDefined(currentProduct)

addPriceIfDefined() 
{
  //Several extracts
}

Detection

[X] Automatic

Since many linters can parse trees we can check on compile-time for nesting levels.

Tags

  • Readability

  • Complexity

Conclusion

Following uncle bob's advice, we should leave the code cleaner than we found it.

Refactoring this problem is easy.

Relations

More Info


The purpose of software engineering is to control complexity, not to create it.

Pamela Zave


This article is part of the CodeSmell Series.

 
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