Rename method

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Rename Method)
Jump to: navigation, search

Rename Method is a refactoring that changes a name of a method into a new one, that better reveals its purpose.

To have clearer, more understandable code, programmers would optimally want to change method names to reflect exactly what the method does. For example:

 public int Add(int x){
     return x+1;
 }

would be better renamed as:

 public int AddOne(int x){
     return x+1;
 }

The function operates the same, but is now more easily readable for developers looking through the code. Note that in some cases there is little necessity for documentation of a simple function if the function or variable name is correct. In these cases the documentation is redundant and may be confusing as it may not match the variable or function name - leading the developer to be unsure as to which (the name or the documentation) is correct. Martin Fowler lists this as one of his refactorings at refactoring.com.

Take care[edit]

Although it seems to be very easy to change a method name, code can be broken if refactoring tools (built into many modern IDE's) are not used to also change all code that refers to the existing method.

If a codebase has provided an external API that including the existing method name then the existing function should not be removed, but 'deprecated' over time and finally removed at a future date. In this case the "Copy Method" refactoring can be considered as an alternative.

Java 5.0 provides the annotation @Override to help protect against mistakes such as this.

External links[edit]