Present Perfect


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Present Perfect


Filed under: Hacking — Thomas @ 7:15 pm

7:15 pm

So, going through the reference code for MPEG-4. This is a pile of code you pay good money for to be able to look at it. It’s pretty sad to see the state it’s in when you get it though. A mish mash of lots of little directories with lots of weird names like


, only a Makefile to build stuff, leaving you clueless about missing libraries… basically makes you feel like being trapped on the set of Back to the Future. But in a bad way.

Also, the code itself makes me cry. I can tell from the code that their tab size was 4 just by looking at the messed-up indentation. And I see macro statements like


both with or without an ending semi-column, lots of unnecessary goto’s, and so on. I know that I’m not the best coder around. But this is supposed to be professional-grade code which is actually in use by Apple, for which people have to pay actual real money, and I wouldn’t even want to maintain it if I got paid large amounts of money for it. Well, I might if I’m allowed to clean it up…

At least one of the advantages of free software is that a lot of people are ashamed to release ugly code, since people will actually see it… Wouldn’t it be nice if professional-grade code was made with people with professional pride ?

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