On the abuse of properties
One thing that I see occasionally is the abuse of property syntax.
IDispatch and CLR objects (and C++ objects if you want to avail
a Microsoft-specific extension)
support “properties”, which syntactically look like fields
but internally are treated as a pair of methods (“get” and “put”).
An important principle is that given an object
and a property
p, the lines
(void)o.p; o.p = o.p;
should be effectively nops.
(Mind you, they might be really inefficient nops.)
My favorite (or perhaps most hated) example of violating this
principle is an object I saw many years ago that had a “print”
property, which if set to true, caused the object to send itself
to the printer.
If you did
o.print = true; o.print = true;
then two copies of the object were printed.
Property syntax mimics field syntax for a reason:
Properties should behave like fields.
(Plenty more guidance on properties can be found in the
.NET Framework Property Usage Guidelines.)