Section outline

  • Best practices in programming

    Basel, 22-23 October 2013

    Target audience

    If the answer to two or more of the following questions is “yes”, then this course is for you.
    - Do you write software to analyze data or implement in-silico models as part of your daily work?
    - Do you write scientific publications based on software you created yourself but do not know what unit testing, refactoring or version control are?
    - Are you writing code that you find hard to understand some weeks later?
    - Do you have thousands of lines of code, but no automated way of verifying that the code works correctly?
    - Do you find yourself regularly using “copy & paste” to re-use code you wrote earlier?
    - Do small changes in your code later cause trouble in other unexpected places?

    Course objectives

    This course will help you avoiding the most common mistakes in the process of writing software in a scientific context and improve the quality of your code.

    The focus of this course is not object-oriented programming, software architecture, design patterns or algorithms. The goal of this course is to introduce skills and techniques for effectively developing software.

    Course structure

    The course will focus on learning and internalizing the practices of unit testing, refactoring, and version control through hands-on experience. The first morning will start with an introduction into these concepts and tools used to support them. In the afternoon, we will transition to a code clinic and work together in small groups applying these practices to make improvements to code brought by participants. The second day will continue with the code clinic.


    Franz-Josef Elmer, Chandrasekhar Ramakrishnan, Bernd Rinn, Milan Simonovic, Jakub Straszewski


    Registration is closed.