In the last few years in the software development world there have been a movement towards Software craftsmanship. Basically, this means writing highly maintainable software. Software which is easy to read and change. Software which last for ever! :-)
This is known as Clean code.
Robert C. Martin - aka Uncle Bob - has written a couple of books about it. A few days ago I downloaded the sample for my kindle of one of them: Clean Code: A Handbook of Agile Software Craftsmanship. It got me captivated. So today I went to the shop to buy the paperback edition - I didn't want to buy the kindle edition because it contains a lot of code and I don't think the kindle is good for that.
I have also found the web site clean-code-developer.de, which mainly based in this book, teaches us how to write clean code. We can find there a bunch principles and practices to follow in order to achieve this. They are separated in different colour grades: Black, Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue and White. The idea is to stay a few weeks in each grade while learning and practising. Once that grade has been fully completed we will jump to the next one. Ones we get to the last colour we will start again from the first grade. We will always keep relearning with no end, in a continuous improvement.
Unfortunately, the main web site is in German. Although an English version of it exists, this is incompleted: clean-code-developer.com. However I found a simplified version in english: http://www.lumiera.org/project/background/CleanCodeDevelopment.html
If you want to become a good developer and write beautiful and maintainable code, you should do as me and follow the path! Stay in each colour 3-4 weeks, learn thoroughly each principle and practice and check every day if you have put properly in practice what you have learnt. If, at the end of that period, you see you have accomplished that grade, jump to the next grade. If not, stay in that grade a bit more.
I am planning to get coloured wristbands as suggested in the web side and wear the one of the current grade in one of my arms. Check every day whether I have used the principles properly and if I haven't move the wristband to the other arm. Once I have kept the wristband in the same arm for 3 weeks I can move forward to the next grade! All of this while I read the book.
Sounds like fun :)
Today I am starting with the black grade. Which is basically a starting point where I shouldn't stay too long - it's basically for self awareness. So tomorrow I will try to get a red wristband and jump to the next grade!