(Pre-)Commit to Better Code

slides
2-3 hours

(Pre-)Commit to Better Code

Maintaining code quality can be challenging, no matter the size of your project or number of contributors. Different team members may have different opinions on code styling and preferences for code structure, while solo contributors might find themselves spending a considerable amount of time making sure the code conforms to accepted conventions. However, manually inspecting and fixing issues in files is both tedious and error-prone. As such, computers are much more suited to this task than humans. Pre-commit hooks are a great way to have a computer handle this for you.

Pre-commit hooks are code checks that run whenever you attempt to commit your changes with Git. They can detect and, in some cases, automatically correct code-quality issues before they make it to your codebase. In this tutorial, you will learn how to install and configure pre-commit hooks for your repository to ensure that only code that passes your checks makes it into your codebase. We will also explore how to build custom pre-commit hooks for novel use cases.


Workshop outline

Section 1: Setting Up Pre-Commit Hooks

After laying the foundation with an overview of Git hooks, we will discuss the use cases for hooks at the pre-commit stage (called pre-commit hooks), as well as a high-level explanation of how to set them up without any external tools. We will then introduce the pre-commit tool and disambiguate it from pre-commit hooks, before commencing a detailed walkthrough of the pre-commit hooks setup process when using pre-commit.

While there are a lot of pre-made hooks in existence, sometimes they aren't sufficient for the task at hand. In this section, we will walk step-by-step through the process of creating and distributing a custom hook. After wiring everything up, we will discuss best practices for sharing, documenting, testing, and maintaining the codebase.


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