- Resources: most of the time, it's not necessary to buy a book, search online instead!
- Templates: it is always rewarding on the long term to start any piece of computer software with a minimum amount of generic code (command-line options, help message, license, usage of gzipped files, running time, etc). But it's a pain to write all this every time, right? And often we know how to do something in one language but not in another. So below are my typical templates for any C++/Python/R/Bash program, as well as Beamer presentation.
- Language-independent user documentation: I'm a firm believer that it is necessary to add some user documentation, even minimal, to any program. An easy way to do this is to simply generate such documentation from the "help" message, as long as it is "properly" formatted (see help2man). The following commands work for any programming language:
help2man -o myprogram.man ./myprogram
groff -mandoc myprogram.man > myprogram.ps
ps2pdf myprogram.ps myprogram.pdf