Necessity of documentation while programming

Written on July 3, 2016

This is a post which discusses the one of the most important requirement of software development phase i.e. documentation.

What is Documentation?

Documentation is a way of telling other programmers and users about your program. It is basically writing comments in the code. Documentation can either for the user or it can be for the programmer.

  • User Documentation can be very helpful for user. It declares the set of rules and define the various ways in which user is allowed to use the software. It can also tell the way of setting up the various environments so that he/she can use the program.

  • Programmers Documentation is used to make the code understandable for the other programmers so that they can understand the code and help in the development and removal of the bugs in the code.

Why is it necessary to document the code?

  • You are going to read your code again in a while : So, you are going to read your code after a while. And when you are going to read it you are going to think why have you done this if and only if the code is not documented properly.

  • To make progress in your open source project : If you want the programmers to look at your code and help you so that your code becomes less and erroneous then you must attract users. Users are only going to come if it is fairly easy to use your program. You can also make it easy by telling the user how to use the software. If you have a large database of users them developers are going to come with them increasing the condition of the program. (Twitter Bootstrap is one of the great example for this. They have set up a great user manual which tells very simply about the project.)

Now you know the basic reasons for creating a documentation of the program. So let’s create documentation using Doxygen. To know more read this post.