Loïc Faugeron Technical Blog

Decouple from Decoupling 26/10/2015

In the last two articles, we've seen how to decouple our application:

Decoupling can be considered as a "Best Practice" as it is a good protection against external changes, but it doesn't mean that it should always be applied everywhere.

This article is about mitigating the usage of this tool.

Clean Code

Decoupling is an important part of clean code, as it can allow a better readability.

For example instead of having a controller full of logic, we just have a Command class initialized with the input parameters that matter and a class name that describe the expected behavior. Inside the Command Handler, instead of having implementation details we have a sequence of service calls that decribe even further the behavior.

Clean code is all about making the application easier to maintain so in theory this should be applied everywhere, but like every rules it can be abused and its usefulness depends on the type of the project.

It might seem strange but some projects don't need to be maintained, for example Proof of Concepts are usually thrown away once the experience they were designed for are done, so it doesn't make sense to take the time to make them perfect.

Some industry are also commissioned to bootstrap a project as fast as possible and are expected to pass over the project without any maintainance plan: usually the ones that promise the earlier delivery for the lowest price are selected. Again it doesn't make sense to take the time to create the most beautiful code if that's not what's been asked and paid for.


Trying to use the right tool for the right job is an important part of being pragmatic.

We've seen that some projects don't necessarly need decoupling as we don't expect to maintain them. But sometimes a project might need decoupling in some parts of it and not in other parts.

As the saying goes, "Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me": since we can't know in advance which parts are going to change we might decide to couple things first. When an issue occurs due to the coupling, we can refactor to avoid further issues.

Last but not least, we can't always decouple from everything: for example the programming language used can also release backward incompatible changes, or we might want to switch to an entirely different one. Is it worth decouling from the language?


Decoupling is a great tool that should be used when needed but the decision of when to use it depends on the context (project, team, industry, etc).

The rule of thumb number one is: don't follow blindly rule of thumbs.