I need to write a text for programmers around the central idea that "performance is not best addressed at the code level".

This is a somewhat polemic issue, and I'd like to make my point as clearly and authoritatively as possible. I dislike the phrasing above because I feel there must be a more direct and natural way to say it, perhaps without the explicit negation "not best addressed".

Is there a better way of saying it?


2 Answers 2


Perhaps is better addressed outside the code level, but better still would be to specify what level actually would be the best (schematic level? management level? language level?).

  • 1
    Thanks @TimLymington, I will be sure to make ir clear on the followup sentences. I though about starting that way because every junior programmer seems to think that every bad coding habit can be forgiven in name of performance. I'd like to clearly state that this is untrue. Then I'd follow up with a detailed explanation. (Btw, the correct place to handle performance concerns is at the architecture level.)
    – rick
    Feb 14, 2014 at 15:07
  • 1
    @rick I would say that this can be better addressed as an active statement, rather than a negative statement: It is better to address performance at the architectural level than at the code level. Performance improvement is never an excuse for bad coding.
    – David M
    Feb 14, 2014 at 15:24
  • I ended up using a variation of this answer in the final manuscript, so thanks a lot.
    – rick
    Feb 15, 2014 at 19:55

You could turn your phrase around a bit maybe...

Coding is not the answer to performance issues.
Code is not the place to handle performance.

It's off-topic here, but although I agree with "performance" being a lousy excuse for bad coding, stating that performance is not to be addressed in coding gives your programmers a wildcard to wreck your performance. And yes I can do that while adhering to any coding standards you trow at me, so be careful not to jeopardize your mission (convince programmers to keep to standards) by making blanket-statements that can easily be attacked ;)

  • +1 Thanks, those are two great suggestions. I'll use them to minimize repetition throught the text.
    – rick
    Feb 15, 2014 at 19:57

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