File: style-guide.txt

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/*====================================================================*
 -  Copyright (C) 2001 Leptonica.  All rights reserved.
 -
 -  Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without
 -  modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions
 -  are met:
 -  1. Redistributions of source code must retain the above copyright
 -     notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer.
 -  2. Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above
 -     copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following
 -     disclaimer in the documentation and/or other materials
 -     provided with the distribution.
 -
 -  THIS SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED BY THE COPYRIGHT HOLDERS AND CONTRIBUTORS
 -  ``AS IS'' AND ANY EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES, INCLUDING, BUT NOT
 -  LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR
 -  A PARTICULAR PURPOSE ARE DISCLAIMED.  IN NO EVENT SHALL ANY
 -  CONTRIBUTORS BE LIABLE FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL,
 -  EXEMPLARY, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES (INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO,
 -  PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES; LOSS OF USE, DATA, OR
 -  PROFITS; OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION) HOWEVER CAUSED AND ON ANY THEORY
 -  OF LIABILITY, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, STRICT LIABILITY, OR TORT (INCLUDING
 -  NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE) ARISING IN ANY WAY OUT OF THE USE OF THIS
 -  SOFTWARE, EVEN IF ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGE.
 *====================================================================*/

                        style-guide.txt

                         27 Jan 2017

This is not a complete guide to the coding style in leptonica.
It covers most of the typographic issues and the most frequent
coding patterns, such as how to check input args to functions.
In general, you need to look at existing code to verify that your
code meets the style guidelines.  And if you find any aberrant code,
please let me know!

The C code in leptonica follows these conventions:

(1) ANSI C, with no exceptions

   (a) C-style comments only:   /*  */

   (b) Variables are declared at the beginning of a function.
       [This is more strict than ANSI C, which only requires declarations
       to be at the beginning of a scope delineated by braces.]

   (c) Use typedefs for structs like Pix; e.g.,
          function(PIX  *pixs)
       Do not do this (omitting the 'struct' keyword); it is valid C++,
       but not C:
          function(Pix  *pixs)

(2) Formatting

   (a) White space:  4 space indentation.  No tabs, ever.  No trailing spaces.

   (b) The code is set up to work with doxygen.  Function headers are in
       this format:

      /*!
       * \brief   pixSelectByAreaFraction()
       *
       * \param[in]    pixs 1 bpp
       * \param[in]    thresh threshold ratio of fg pixels to (w * h)
       * \param[in]    connectivity 4 or 8
       * \param[in]    type L_SELECT_IF_LT, L_SELECT_IF_GT,
       *                    L_SELECT_IF_LTE, L_SELECT_IF_GTE
       * \param[out]   pchanged [optional] 1 if changed; 0 if clone returned
       * \return  pixd, or NULL on error
       *
       * <pre>
       * Notes:
       *      (1) The args specify constraints on the amount of foreground
       *          coverage of the components that are kept.
       *   ....
       * </pre>
       */

   (c) Function definition has return value on separate line and starting
       brace on separate line.

       PIX *
       function(...)
       {

   (d) Function arguments and local variables line up vertically;
       allow at least 2 spaces between type and variable name (including '*')

       function(PIX        *pixs,
                l_int32     factor,
                l_float32  *pave)
       {
       char        buf[BUF_SIZE];
       l_int32     w, h, d;
       l_float32  *vect;

   (e) Braces are placed like this for 'if', 'while', 'do':

       if (...) {
           ...
       } else if (...) {
           ...
       }

       The exceptions are for the beginning of a function and for the switch:

       switch (x)
       {
       case 1:
           ...
       ...
       }

       Braces are required if any of the clauses have more than one statement:

       if (...) {
           x = 0;
       } else {
           x++;
           y = 3.0 * x;
       }

   (f) Section headers should look like this:

   /*----------------------------------------------------------------------*
    *                  Statistics in an arbitrary rectangle                *
    *----------------------------------------------------------------------*/

   (g) Major inline comments (starting a section) should be indented
       4 extra spaces and start with a capital.  Multiple line comments
       should be formatted like this:

           /* If w and h not input, determine the minimum size required
            * to contain the origin and all c.c. */

   (h) Minor inline comments (e.g., at the end of a line) should have
       2 spaces and no leading capital; e.g.

          if (i && ((i % ncols) == 0)) {  /* start new row */

(3) Naming

   (a) Function names begin with lower case and successive words have
       the first letter capitalized; e.g., boxIntersects().

   (b) The first word in the function name is the name of the primary
       input data structure (if there is one); otherwise it can
       name the output data structure (if there is one).

   (c) Variable names are as short as possible, without causing confusion.

   (d) Pointers to data structures are typically named by the type of
       struct, without a leading 'p'; e.g., pixt, boxt.

   (e) When ptrs are input to a function, in order to return a value,
       if the local name would be 'ave', the pointer is 'pave'.

   (f) Preprocessor variables and enums are named all caps,
       with '_' between parts.

   (g) There are very few globals in the library.  Of these, there
       are just a handful of static globals that can be changed.
       Globals are named with each word beginning with a capital; e.g.,
            ImageFileFormatExtensions[]
       Static globals are named like preprocessor variables, except
       they are prepended by 'var_'; e.g.,
            var_PNG_WRITE_ALPHA
       Functions that set globals are named with a pre-pended 'l_'; e.g.,
            l_pngSetWriteAlpha()

   (h) Where there may be issues with namespace collisions with other
       libraries, function names can be prepended with 'l_'; e.g.,
            l_amapInsert()

(4) Arg checking

   Both number values and ptrs can be returned in function arguments.
   The following applies equally to both types, and happens at the
   beginning of the function.  We distinguish between returned entities
   that are optional and required.  The following sequence of tests
   and initializations guarantees that no uninitialized arguments
   are returned:

   (a) First, all optional values are initialized if possible:

          if (pboxa) *pboxa = NULL;  // Boxa **pboxa is optional

   (b) Second, if there is more than 1 required value, each is
       initialized if possible:

          if (pnar) *pnar = NULL;  // Numa **pnar is required
          if (pnag) *pnag = NULL;  // Numa **pnag is required

       Then all required arguments are tested in arbitrary order.

       But if there is exactly 1 required value, it can be checked
       and initialized if possible:

          if (!ppixd)
              return ERROR_INT("&pixd not defined, procName, 1);
          *ppixd = NULL;

(5) Miscellaneous

   (a) Look around at the code after reviewing the guidelines.

   (b) Return nothing on stdout.

   (c) Returns to stderr should be blockable by compiler flags, such
       as NO_CONSOLE_IO, and by setting message severity thresholds
       both at compile and at run time.  Naked fprintf(stderr, ...)
       should be avoided in the library.

   (d) Applications (in prog) that hand a FILE ptr to a library function,
       or accept heap-allocated data from a library function, should
       use special wrappers.  See lept_*() functions in utils.c.

   (e) Changes to existing data structures and API changes should be
       avoided if possible.

   (f) Accessors are typically provided for struct fields that have
       extensive use.