Ask HN: How much time should I spend reviewing code?

Your goal is to train them, guide them, coach, mentor and turn them into good developers that you would want to hire. It’s a full time job.

My approach is I start by giving them simple tasks to get comfortable. I have them pairing with more experienced folks to get hang of the teams approach. I engage them in discussions, making sure they have solid foundation for what they’re working on. In my case for Enterprise app, that’s making sure they really understand OOP, Making sure they understand interface and composition over inheritance, making sure they understand SOLID principles.

When it comes to code, I talk a lot about design. We can take a problem and solve it 5 different ways, and weigh the pros and cons. Sometimes there’s no best way, and what’s more important is understanding your approach and why. You might want to optimize for shorter development time, or for faster code execution, or for extensibility or for reliability and they all require different things. What is the current constraint of our situation calling for? Sometimes we can take the same code and rewrite it over and over in different ways till we are sick of it.

My goal with interns is to make sure they understand the fundamentals, and then to realize that there’s truly a hundred ways to skin the cat, and not to run with the first solution they think of. I don’t really like the review over software, other team members can do that, but I prefer to pair and we just talk casually and share screen while we talk about the code. If what they did needs a completely revamp, I might give them a pseudocode and send them off after discussion.

I make sure they understand that code is a small part of it. Did they capture the WHY of the code? Did they test? What type of test? unit? e2e? stress? Did they document on how to test/run their code? Did they write documentation?

Your code review must match up to your documented code guidelines, I show why our approach is in alignment with our guideline. You can’t review without a guideline. The end goal is to have someone that will eventually become a very produc

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