My style doesn't matter

It’s official, I’m no longer with Blizzard and started with the company YouSendIt. I’m really excited to be working with the FoundApp team doing some very awesome things that I’m sure that I’ll be able to talk about soon ™. Until then, I’ve just got the one takeaway: my coding style doesn’t matter.

If you’ve worked with me in the past or have dug through my open source projects on GitHub, you know that I’m a big advocate of normalizing coding standards and style. I’ve probably spent a considerable amount of time with you and maybe a group of other people talking about bracing and tabbing and whether or not the last argument of a method signature should have the closing parenthesis and the opening brace at the end of the line or on the next line.

What I’m telling you now is that in the course of just a little more than 7 days, I’ve completely undone most of the code style patterns that I’ve pushed so hard for over the past few years. Why? Simple, the team had a style in place and it was used pretty consistently everywhere. Trying to come in and push one style or another while there is something already in place would do more harm than good. Personally arguing in favor of one alignment method or another is simply a waste of time. Unfortunately, the most important act, agreeing, comes at great cost because so few people seem to understand this.

When I started checking out code here at YouSendIt, it took about 2 hours to have my kneejerk reaction to how drasticly different the code in the repositories was. It took some time, but eventually did happen, to adjust and I’m perfectly ok with it. Do I personally prefer tabs over spaces? Sure. Does that mean that I’ll check in code with tabs instead of spaces? Nope. Why? Consistency trumps personal preference. Almost always.