The Problems with Events

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There’s no question that the for loop is a good idea, but events are much more complex. They’re enshrined into C# by the event keyword, but not everything about them is good. Today’s article shows some considerations you should take into account when deciding whether or not to use an event. Bonus: it includes some little extension methods to make using events and delegates easier!

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Introducing MV-C: A Unity-Specific Design Pattern

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Last year I introduced a Unity-based model-view-controller (MVC) design pattern and in the many comments on that article, a theme arose. The “model” part of MVC is arguably not necessary since Unity stores so much of the data itself. Today’s article takes that theme and elaborates on it to create and introduce a new Unity-specific design pattern. Read on to see how this adaptation of MVC works!

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Unity Function Performance Followup

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By request, today’s article follows up on my Unity Function Performance article from a year and a half ago using Unity 5.0. It adds on GameObject.SendMessage and virtual functions to get a more complete picture of how various function calls in Unity perform. Of course it runs these tests using Unity 5.4 to see if there have been any changes in the engine. Read on for the results!

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Iterators vs. Callbacks: Performance and Garbage

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Iterator functions and their ability to yield return values then continue on really come in handy for a variety of situations. Unfortunately, they come with some pretty serious performance and garbage creation drawbacks. So today’s article explores alternatives in various forms of callbacks: delegates, interfaces, and classes. Can they perform better than iterator functions? Can they avoid garbage creation? Read on to find out!

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Which JSON Library Creates the Most Garbage?

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Which JSON library creates the most garbage? That’s a common question I get in response to my JSON articles. Today’s article finds out the answer!

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JSON Libraries Comparison Followup

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I wrote an article when Unity 5.3 came out to test its built-in JSON serializer library against some of the open source JSON libraries. Today’s article updates with Unity 5.4 and adds a requested JSON library—Full Serializer—to the mix. Has Unity 5.4 improved performance? Is the new version of JSON.NET any faster? Can Full Serializer best them all? Read on to find out!

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Should You Cache Array.Length and List.Count?

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Every time I see for (var i = 0; i < array.Length; ++i) I wonder if accessing that Length property is slow. Should I cache it? It’s comforting to know that for (int i = 0, len = array.Length; i < len; ++i) is only dealing with local variables except on the first loop. Local variables must be faster, right? Likewise, I wonder the same thing about List<T>.Count. I finally got around to running a test to see if caching these length properties makes any performance difference. The answers might surprise you!

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Problem and Solution: The Terrible Inefficiency of FileStream and BinaryReader

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File I/O can be a major performance bottleneck for many apps. It’s all too easy to read files in a way that is massively inefficient. Classes like FileStream and BinaryReader make it really easy to write super slow code. Today’s article explores why this happens and what can be done about it. Read on to learn more!

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Reduce Bugs by Pruning Your Object Graph with Temporary Objects

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One of the biggest source of bugs in our apps is state: all of that persistent data we keep around in memory. When things change we need to make sure to update all of it at the right times and with the right new parts of the state that changed. Inevitably things get out of sync and our app is in “a bad state”. Today’s article discusses some ways we can prune the “graph” of objects that we create in OOP so that there’s less state to maintain. Read on for some interesting techniques that could help you prevent bugs!

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The Many Types and Dangers of Callbacks

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Callbacks are a mainstay of the real-time games and apps we build in Unity. We’re constantly writing asynchronous code for every operation from walking a character to a destination to making a web call. It’s really convenient for these functions to “call back” and report their status so we know how the operation is going. Unfortunately there are also a lot of dangers that come along with this. Today we’ll look into the surprisingly large number of ways you can “call back” in C# and some of the ways you can get burned doing so.

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