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Coding Conventions


  • Use short but speaking names.

  • Use Latin alphanumeric ASCII characters and common technical separator (e.g. underscore).

  • For package segments and type names prefer singular forms. Only use plural forms when there is no singular or it is really semantically required.

  • Names of classes, interfaces, enums or annotations should be unique within your project unless intentionally desired.

  • Avoid artificial naming constructs such as prefixes (I*) or suffixes (*IF) for interfaces.

  • Use CamelCase even for abbreviations (XmlUtil instead of XMLUtil).

  • Names of Generics should be easy to understand.

    • Follow the common rule E=Element, T=Type, K=Key, V=Value.

    • Use longer names for more specific cases such as ID, DTO or ENTITY.

    • Use capitalized naming helps to distinguish a generic type from a regular class.


  • APIs are properly documented with JavaDoc.

  • In Javadoc express information not already available in the signature.

  • {@link} tags in JavaDoc make it more expressive.

  • Describe how to use the type or method and not the implementation.

  • Implementation details should be documented inline in complex cases.

  • Use @Override instead of {@inheritDoc}. Since Java 1.5 @Override annotation inherits {@inheritDoc}.

Prefer general API

  • Do not bind your code to implementations such as Vector or ArrayList instead of List.

  • Use Collection instead of List or Set where the difference does not matter.

  • Consider Collection<? extends Foo> when Foo is an interface or super-class.

Catching and handling Exceptions

When catching exceptions always ensure the following:

  • Never call printStackTrace() method on an exception.

  • Either log or wrap and re-throw the entire catched exception. Do not do both.

    • When wrapping and re-throwing an exception ensure that the catched exception is passed as cause.

    • When logging an exception ensure that the entire exception is passed as argument to the logger. (See the throwable argument in logback).

Closing Resources

Resources such as streams or transactions need to be handled properly:

  • Do not deal with such resources manually where possible. (E.g. @Transactional over manual transaction handling where possible).

  • Use try-with-resources statement.


  • Whenever possible prefer unicode (UTF-8 or better) as encoding.

  • Do not cast from byte to char.

  • Always explicitly use an according western locale (e.g. toLowerCase(Locale.US)). See the following discussion on stackoverflow.

  • Write your code independent from the default encoding (system property file.encoding).

    • Always provide an encoding when you create a String from byte[]: new String(bytes, encoding).

    • Always provide an encoding when you create a Reader or Writer : new InputStreamReader(inStream, encoding).

Prefer primitive boolean

  • Avoid using the object type Boolean.

// bad
public Boolean isEmpty {
  return size() == 0;

// fine
public boolean isEmpty {
  return size() == 0;

Be aware of the scopes of CDI classes

For further references on the scopes in spring and quarkus see:


Avoid using byte[] for BLOBs as this will load them entirely into your memory. This will cause performance issues or out of memory errors. Instead, use streams when dealing with BLOBs.


  • Do not use Optional for every parameter or result to express that it may be null.

  • Use @Nullable`or `@NotNull to clarify the expectation.

Further good practices on optionals can be found here:

Lambdas and Streams

Basic good practices are described here:

Additionally, the following rules should be applied:

Do not use parallel Streams

  • Using parallelStream() in general code that will run on server side can have unexpected side effects.

  • Performance improvements should be monitored and not blindly adapted.

Do not perform operations on a sub-stream inside a lambda -> x.getChildren().stream().filter(this::isSpecial)).collect(Collectors.toList()); // bad -> x.getChildren().stream()).filter(this::isSpecial).collect(Collectors.toList()); // fine

Only use collect at the end of the stream. // bad // fine

Avoid if/else inside foreach method

  • Use Filter method & comprehension instead.

Code Tasks

Code spots that need some rework can be marked with the following tasks tags.


Used to mark a piece of code that is not yet complete. A TODO tag is added by the author of the code who is also responsible for completing this task.

 // TODO «author» «description»


A FIXME tag is added by the author of the code or someone who found a bug he can not fix right now. The «author» who added the FIXME is also responsible for completing this task.

 // FIXME «author» «description»


Don’t use REVIEW tags in modern applications! Todays source code management systems usually have a review support.

A REVIEW tag is added by a reviewer during a code review. The original author of the code is responsible to resolve the REVIEW tag and the reviewer assigns this task to him.

 // REVIEW «responsible» («reviewer») «description»