The development process for apps, websites, and desktop apps require plenty of backtracking. If you’ve ever had experience debugging a website, you’ll know that going back and forth lines of code can be a rigorous experience.
For this reason, it’s necessary to reinforce documentation as part of the coding process.
The Value of Effective Documentation
Besides the process of writing code, it’s essential to have healthy documentation practices.
This is because the information in the code needs to be properly translated into a language understandable by humans. From machine language, it needs to be accessible to different people interacting with the code in practice.
In this article, we’ll share three reasons web developers should invest in documentation more often.
1. Helping the Coder Backtrack and Audit
Running a business is all about optimisation, and this also applies to writing and testing code.
This is why documenting will help developers identify different sets of code easily without wasting time dissecting every line they’ve written.
Contrary to popular belief, not all coders and developers are extremely precise individuals. In fact, plenty of developers have trouble understanding their own code themselves.
This can be the case after looking back at code they’ve written years or even months prior. For this reason, it’s vital to reinforce documentation to easily audit lines of code in no time.
2. Setting a Standard to Fellow Developers
A developer’s approach to coding may vary, depending on their personal preference.
One developer can have an unconventional approach that may perform a similar action to a traditional format. While this doesn’t have much effect on personal projects, it can get messy when multiple developers work on the same project.
Developing an app or website requires multiple developer teams to handle different aspects of the code. The more content and features the code has to account for, the more specialised each segment of code needs to be.
For this reason, it’s vital to have all development teams follow a set standard of documentation to maintain consistency.
Unlike end-user documentation, this process involves the documentation of technical procedures.
It’s an addition to the document that should show the base structure of pages and how API can work along certain code samples.
Developers would typically input a documentation in line with the code through comments to describe its general function. This allows new developers to edit code effectively, even if they weren’t present during the initial stages of the development process.
3. Communicating Effectively to Users
Documentation doesn’t just help the development team; it also allows users to have a better understanding of their software.
Documentation is a great way for users to know what they’re seeing in their webpages or phone apps and potentially identify errors. The trick to effective documentation is to follow simplicity.
This means your code should be clear-cut, even for people who aren’t savvy in coding jargon.
Coding has many applications today, especially since consumers are leaning more toward digital platforms. For this reason, many business owners need to develop bespoke websites, apps, and other digital assets for their business model.
Thankfully, they don’t need to undergo years of training to achieve the benefits of adapting to digital mediums.