Hey all,

I am currently working with some Java developers who have been ignoring best practices. I am trying to put together a document outlining the no-brainer coding practices that will give us the most bang for our buck. Specifically, I do not want to knit pick over style issues such as which lines brackets should be placed on, or whether the developer should name their counter I or idx. Instead I am looking for guidelines that have a large impact on the robustness and maintainability of the code, such as developing modular code, employing good commenting practices, avoiding egregious things like catch(Throwable t), etc

Examples of things I am not looking for:
  • Maximum line length
  • White space guidance
  • Variable naming conventions
  • Formatting of compound statements

Examples of things I am looking for
  • Removal dead code
  • Catch the most specific exception possible
  • Close your I/O streams within finally blocks
  • Employ modular design, never maintain multiple baselines

The reason I am not just pointing them at the wikipedia article on best coding practices, or the official Java coding standards is because the target audience is pretty lazy and will probably not read anything that is longer than a few pages.

Does anyone have any resources I could look at for best code design practices that deal with overall code development philosophy rather than things that can be fixed via the use of an automated code formatting tool or something? I am really looking to provide maximum value to the developers with a minimal amount of reading.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.