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Effective Code Review


Dougal Matthews - Effective Code Review [EuroPython 2016] [19 July 2016] [Bilbao, Euskadi, Spain] (

Developers usually state that finding defects is the primary motivation for doing code reviews. However, research has shown that the main benefits of code reviews are; knowledge transfer, team awareness and finding alternative solutions.

Code reviews when done well are more than just finding defects; it should be a discussion and conversation with other developers about finding the best solutions. We will talk about re-framing code review to encourage open discussions.

This talk is for everyone that is already involved in regular code review and those hoping to start. I will talk through the code review process with the aim of making it a better and more useful experience for both the authors and the reviewers.

The talk will follow the following rough outline:

  • Introduction
  • Why do code reviews
  • What are we aiming to get out of it
  • Submitting code for review
  • How can you help reviewers?
  • What should you avoid doing?
  • Removing ownership of the code
  • Reviewing code
  • How should you give feedback?
  • What should you look for?
  • How can you encourage people to review more?
  • How to avoid and remove bike-shedding
  • Code review tools and how they impact on the process.
  • Wrap up and conclusion
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