As programmers, who are we programming for? On the one hand, we're writing code to be interpreted by machines; considered this way, code should be logical, consistent, and machine readable. But unless you're writing code in Assembly, the fact of the matter is that the code you're writing will never be directly interpreted by the machine—a compiler will take that code and make it machine readable.

So, in the case of interpreted languages, who is the code for, in the end? I'd argue it's for you, the developer, and those who will be maintaining it later.

As such, I've always taken Larry Wall's aspiration for coding in natural language to be a lofty and noble goal (despite the fact that idiomatic Perl is considered a write-only language). Name variables meaningfully, instead of using short, cryptic names. Follow natural grammar when you can. Use white space to separate discrete ideas and concepts in your code.

Code can be poetry, if you work at it.

Dive Deeper

If you want to know more about the Pastry Box Project, you can read about the genesis (and goals) of the project.

Swim In The Stream

A stream of all the thoughts published on the Pastry Box Project is available. Keep it open somewhere, and lose yourself in it whenever you feel like it.

Meet Your Host

There are not only pieces of software talking to each other behind this website. There is a human, too. The Pastry Box is brought to you by Alex Duloz.

Stay Tuned

You can follow @thepastrybox on Twitter. For direct inquiries, get in touch with @alexduloz.