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I've been struggling to come up with a good answer to this question: What is good code?

Programming is such a technical subject. It appears to be something you can definitively analyze. But when I think about it through this question, programming seems entirely subjective.

I know good code can be readable, terse, eloquent, standardized, innovative. But it can't be just one of these qualities.

Good code can be highly stylized — utilizing nuanced patterns rarely seen elsewhere. Or good code can be highly structured — following strict guidelines and established conventions. Bad code can be either as well.

I think the answer to "What is good code?" is that there is no answer. You can't put it in words. Like asking "What makes a joke funny?"

I get aggrivated reading discussions about code that have an objective air — that there is a higher, truer form of code we are all trying to obtain, like a Platonic ideal.

There are many ways to the top of the mountain. And there are many mountain tops. And maybe some of us are actually navigating towards river vallies or misty caves.

Programming is not computer science, it is a computer artform, a computer craft.

Becoming a better coder feels like pursuing a mirage. The closer I approach the goal, the sooner it fades away. But I can become better at expressing myself through code.

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