Naming things is hard

Published on May 11, 2012

Much of my career has been spent with me as the most senior developer on my team.  It has its pros and cons, I have learned how to figure stuff out on my own, but I have had to re-make many mistakes that I could have avoided.

However, one of the most memorable pieces of wisdom I gained from one of my bosses, was a little gem about how to name variables and properties of things.  The rule says, you should always name from the most specific concept to the least.

Examples would be:

OrderQuantity ShippedQuantity ReceivedDate InvoiceDate MaxAge

There is not any reason why ShippedQuantity is any better QuantityShipped, it is the consistency of the naming that is more important.  I have found this simple rule has made naming stuff a little bit easier.  Hopefully others will too.