CrowdforThink : Blog -Tips Code Review. A SmartBear study of a Cisco Systems programming team revealed that developers should review no more than 200 to 400 lines of code (LOC) at a time.
1. Review fewer than 400 lines of code at a time
A SmartBear study of a Cisco Systems programming team revealed that developers should review no more than 200 to 400 lines of code (LOC) at a time. The brain can only effectively process so much information at a time; beyond 400 LOC, the ability to find defects diminishes.
In practice, a review of 200-400 LOC over 60 to 90 minutes should yield 70-90% defect discovery. So, if 10 defects existed in the code, a properly conducted review would find between seven and nine of them.
2. Take your time. Inspection rates should under 500 LOC per hour
It can be tempting to tear through a review, assuming that someone else will catch the errors that you don´t find. However, SmartBear research shows a significant drop in defect density at rates faster than 500 LOC per hour. Code reviews in reasonable quantity, at a slower pace for a limited amount of time results in the most effective code review.
3. Do not review for more than 60 minutes at a time
Just as you shouldn´t review code too quickly, you also should not review for too long in one sitting. When people engage in any activity requiring concentrated effort over a period of time, performance starts dropping off after about 60 minutes. Studies show that taking breaks from a task over a period of time can greatly improve quality of work. Conducting more frequent reviews should reduce the need to ever have to conduct a review of this length.
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