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* The LAME API is frozen. Poorly designed as it is, don't change it,
and add to it sparingly.
* Don't take it upon yourself to go through LAME with the sole purpose
of updating everything to match this guide. Especially important:
don't change the spacing, indentation, curly braces, etc,
in routines you did not write.
* If you want to make a change which effects many many functions,
please check with the maintainer first.
* Respect the indentation of the author of the original function.
If the indentation is not consistent, use 4.
* Don't use tabulators (the character with the value '\t') in source code,
especially these with a width of unequal 8. Lame sources are using
different sizes for tabulators.
* Don't set the macro NDEBUG in alpha versons.
NDEBUG should be set for beta versions.
* check important assumptions with an assert()
* use int for all integer quantities.
LAME requires 32 bit ints, so you can assume int is at least 32 bits.
Don't use 'long'. Don't use 'unsigned' unless ABSOLUTELY necessary.
Don't use 'char' just to save bytes. If 64 bits is required, use int64.
ISO C calls the 64 bit int type not int64 but int64_t.
* Avoid using float or double, and instead use: (defined in machine.h).
FLOAT for variables which require at least 32bits
FLOAT8 for variables which require at least 64bits
On some machines, 64bit will be faster than 32bit. Also, some math
routines require 64bit float, so setting FLOAT=float will result in a
lot of conversions.
Annotation (pfk):
The new ISO C standard passed in autumn 1999 has defined new types for
exactly this reason. There are called float_least32_t and float_least64_t
and have at least the advantage that you not need to explain their
Annotation (mt):
we will adopt this convention in Jan 1, 2003.
* The internal representation of PCM samples in type 'sample_t',
currently this is a FLOAT.
* Use SI base units. Lame mixes Hz, kHz, kbps, bps. This is mess.
float wavelength_green = 555.e-9;
unsigned data_rate = 128000;
float lowpass_freq = 12500.;
Converting between user input and internal representation should be done
near the user interface, not in the most inner loop of an utility
Edited version of the Linux Kernel Style Guide:
Chapter 1: Indentation
Respect the indentation of the author of the original function.
If the indentation is not consistent, don't change it. If
you are so anal-retentive about these things and you can't
bare to even look at code with poor indentation, change it to 4.
Chapter 2: Placing Braces
The other issue that always comes up in C styling is the placement of
braces. Unlike the indent size, there are few technical reasons to
choose one placement strategy over the other, but the preferred way, as
shown to us by the prophets Kernighan and Ritchie, is to put the opening
brace last on the line, and put the closing brace first, thusly:
if (x is true) {
we do y
However, there is one special case, namely functions: they have the
opening brace at the beginning of the next line, thus:
int function(int x)
body of function
Heretic people all over the world have claimed that this inconsistency
is ... well ... inconsistent, but all right-thinking people know that
(a) K&R are _right_ and (b) K&R are right. Besides, functions are
special anyway (you can't nest them in C).
Note that the closing brace is empty on a line of its own, _except_ in
the cases where it is followed by a continuation of the same statement,
ie a "while" in a do-statement or an "else" in an if-statement, like
do {
body of do-loop
} while (condition);
if (x == y) {
} else if (x > y) {
} else {
Rationale: K&R.
Also, note that this brace-placement also minimizes the number of empty
(or almost empty) lines, without any loss of readability. Thus, as the
supply of new-lines on your screen is not a renewable resource (think
25-line terminal screens here), you have more empty lines to put
comments on.
Chapter 3: Naming
C is a Spartan language, and so should your naming be. Unlike Modula-2
and Pascal programmers, C programmers do not use cute names like
ThisVariableIsATemporaryCounter. A C programmer would call that
variable "tmp", which is much easier to write, and not the least more
difficult to understand.
HOWEVER, while mixed-case names are frowned upon, descriptive names for
global variables are a must. To call a global function "foo" is a
shooting offense.
GLOBAL variables (to be used only if you _really_ need them) need to
have descriptive names, as do global functions. If you have a function
that counts the number of active users, you should call that
"count_active_users()" or similar, you should _not_ call it "cntusr()".
Encoding the type of a function into the name (so-called Hungarian
notation) is brain damaged - the compiler knows the types anyway and can
check those, and it only confuses the programmer. No wonder MicroSoft
makes buggy programs.
LOCAL variable names should be short, and to the point. If you have
some random integer loop counter, it should probably be called "i".
Calling it "loop_counter" is non-productive, if there is no chance of it
being mis-understood. Similarly, "tmp" can be just about any type of
variable that is used to hold a temporary value.
Chapter 4: Functions
Document functions.
Keep functions as modular as possible. But don't adhere to artificial
line number limitations. For example, lame_encode_frame() encodes a
single MP3 frame and is a long sequence of function calls. It makes
no sense to break this into two or more routines.
Chapter 5: Commenting
Comments are good, but there is also a danger of over-commenting. NEVER
try to explain HOW your code works in a comment: it's much better to
write the code so that the _working_ is obvious, and it's a waste of
time to explain badly written code.
Generally, you want your comments to tell WHAT your code does, not HOW.
Also, try to avoid putting comments inside a function body: if the
function is so complex that you need to separately comment parts of it,
you should probably go back to chapter 4 for a while. You can make
small comments to note or warn about something particularly clever (or
ugly), but try to avoid excess. Instead, put the comments at the head
of the function, telling people what it does, and possibly WHY it does