Chapter 24. Inspecting the Results—Semiautomated Code Review with Jupiter[21]

Introducing Jupiter—A Code Review Tool for Eclipse

Code reviews are possibility the single most efficient way to reduce defects and improve code quality. Simply put, code reviews involve manually inspecting source code for defects, often using a checklist of common errors to help focus the search. In addition, they are an effective way of improving your team’s development skills.

As Cédric Beust points out in his interesting blog entry on the topic,[*] there are two main approaches to code reviews, which he calls “blocking” code reviews and “nonblocking” code reviews. Blocking code reviews involve a more formal, rigid process in which code changes must be approved by a reviewer before they can be committed to the source code repository. Although this strategy should, theoretically at least, let less defects get into the code repository, it has the obvious disadvantage of potentially blocking a developer’s work until her code changes are reviewed.

Nonblocking code reviews are less formal and more flexible. Developers submit their code changes to a reviewer, who will review them in due course. However, the developers don’t need to wait for the review before submitting their changes to version control. This more agile approach avoids blocking developer work, without necessarily compromising quality. Indeed, knowing that your code will be examined is a strong motivation for writing clearer, well-commented code. ...

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