How to check a website’s coding quality
A code quality evaluation will let you know which parts of the code are good (of high quality) and which parts of the code are bad (of low quality), as the name suggests.
But how do you get around to checking the quality of a website’s code? The quality of code that your website is built on is definitely an important factor, it directly affects the overall quality of the software and also just how reliable and safe your code base really is.
The hallmark of good code is:
- Does what is expected out of it
- Adheres to a consistent style
- Is easy to understand
- Is well documented
- Can be tested
The issue with manual testing is that it does have a certain margin of error that cannot be ignored, moreover it is hard for programmers to find an error in the code that they have written and are more than likely to not notice it. Considering this and the fact that tests are not always efficient it is of paramount importance to rely on a good website in order to assess the quality of code because the bad quality of code can lead to catastrophic results that tarnish the reputation and perception of the brand. It is also important to note here that the responsibility of upholding quality is not one person’s job but a commitment everyone on the team has to make and adhere to, from the tester to the manager everyone has to do their part in upholding the quality of it.
Some key aspects to measure during a quality test are as follows:
- Reliability Evaluates whether or not a system will run smoothly and without any errors over a significant period of time. It gives you information about the number of defects there are and the mean time between two successive failures. The aim is to have as few defect counts as possible.
- Maintainability This refers to how easily maintainable the software is. It refers to variables such as consistency, size, structure, as well as the complexity of the code. Maintainability is based on not one but all of the aforementioned aspects.
- Testability As the name suggests, this measures how easily a particular software can support being tested. It is hinged on controlling, observing, isolating, and automate testing. This can be measured based on how many tests you need to run before finding a fault with it. It is important to note here that the size and complexity of the program affect the testability of the software greatly.
- Portability Portability is an extremely important feature to test out because this tells you how usable your software is in different environments. You can measure just how platform independent your codebase is. A good way to go about this stage is to test out the code on different platforms regularly as opposed to waiting until the end of the development stage. Adhering to a coding standard goes a long way in ensuring a portable code.
- Reusability is exactly what it sounds like, the feature that makes a code useful in another context. This can be measured in terms of interdependencies, and these interdependencies can be uncovered with the use of a static analyzer. Moreover having a reusable code is like having an asset.
Some metrics you can use to gauge the quality of your code are as follows:
- Defect metrics: Identifies the stage in which the defect arises Calculates the number of defect reports Time required to identify and correct the defects The density of defects (number of defects per line of code).
- Complexity metrics Program vocabulary Program length Difficulty Volume Calculated program length.
Some easy ways to improve code quality are as follows:
- Adhere to a strict coding standard
- Analyze and check the code at every stage
- Follow the code reviews
- Refactor the legacy code
On a concluding note we would like to mention that quality measurement is a tricky task at best and can be subjective because after all quality is a subjective measure. Quality maintenance and checking is an aspect of websites that is picked up and learnt over time.