Technical Report
 

Typographic style is more than cosmetic

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https://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/technical_reports/0v838815m

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  • There is disagreement about the role and importance of typographic style (source code formatting and commenting) in program comprehension. Results from experiments and opinions in programming style books are mixed. This paper presents principles of typographic style consistent and compatible with the results of program comprehension studies. It introduces the book format paradigm, an implementation of these style principles. Results from four experiments demonstrate that the typographic style principles embodied in the book format significantly aid program comprehension and reduce maintenance effort. The typographic style principles presented in this paper have direct application to code formatters, such as prettyprinters and syntax-directed editors, programming language design, and programming instruction practices.
  • Keywords: Programming style, coding style, code formatting
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