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How to translate "best practice", or more specific "best coding practice" or "best programming practice"? Can I say literally "beste Programmierpraktiken" or "bewährte Programmierpraktiken" Or it is okay to use the English phrase?

  • In what context? A newspaper article might user other language than a developer wiki article. – problemofficer Jun 5 '17 at 10:59
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beste Programmierpraktiken, bewährte Programmierpraktiken

I the company where I work noone would understand this.

Or it is okay to use the English phrase?

... at least in the company where I work they use the English term "Best Practice".

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    Please not that while "Best Practice" is most understood, because nothing is lost in translation, using English words in German texts often sounds unprofessional, pretentious or like a buzzword. Thus, as I commented on OP, it depends on the context. I would advice against putting the English term into e.g. marketing material. – problemofficer Jun 6 '17 at 2:49
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    Wieso Praktiken und nicht Praxis? – user unknown Jun 6 '17 at 3:51
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"Best practice" in English is not necessarily restricted to programming, but rather widely used in economy and other areas.

I would assume that most of German-speaking programmers would understand "best practice" in case you used the English expression.

I would, however, also assume that you should not generalise this - in other areas, English is not as wide-spread as in computer science.

"Best practice" should probably be translated as eine bewährte Methode, eine vorbildliche Methode, Erfolgsrezept or bewährte Vorgehensweise.

  • Even though I'm German, I lived in UK for 14 years and my English is pretty decent (so I know about "best practice"). However, my German is a bit rusty (or rather the language has moved on from my level 14 years ago). I now have to write in German and would like to know how to best translate "best coding practice" in a German text today. – Walter Jun 4 '17 at 15:39
  • Btw, I don't think that all your suggestions are correct translations of "best practice" in the general case. The problem with the English phrase is that it doesn't specify: best for what? Only "vorbildlich" does not do that either. – Walter Jun 4 '17 at 15:45
  • The point I see is that "best practice" is often claimed to be the "commonly agreed best way to do things" - As if there were such an agreement. Any German translation must leave this "agreement" out of the picture as the literal translation "beste Methode" would not be accepted. – tofro Jun 4 '17 at 16:34
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Ganz einfach:

es ist gute Praxis...

es ist bewährte Praxis...

Oder etwas altmodischer auch

es ist guter Brauch...

es ist gute Übung...

nach den Regeln des Handwerks...

nach den Regeln der Kunst...

nach guter Handwerkskunst...

es ist Usus...

es ist branchenüblich...

(letzteres voraussetzend dass die Branche gute, nicht schlechte Methoden als Standard hat)

  • Auch Usus kann branchenübliche Nachlässigkeit bezeichnen. – user unknown Jun 6 '17 at 3:53
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Additionally I would offer:

  • übliche Vorgehensweise
  • Standardverfahren
  • Goldstandard (if you want to point out that a method is the very best of all possible solutions)

Sample:

Unter den Optimierungsverfahren ist diese Methode der Goldstandard.

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    "Goldstandard" halte ich für einen wenig empfehlenswerten, da spröden Amerikanismus. Ich glaube nicht einmal, dass das Wort (in diesem Zusammenhang) wirklich in Gebrauch ist im Deutschen. Außer vielleicht in gedankenlosen Übersetzungen aus dem Amerikanischen. – Christian Geiselmann Jun 5 '17 at 10:43
  • @ChristianGeiselmann: Nicht immer nur das sagen, was alle sagen, auch mal abweichen, wenns passt. Misslingt einer Hausfrau etwas, sagt auch keiner: »O Gott, ein Katastrophenkuchen.« Ist aber treffend. – Pollitzer Jun 5 '17 at 19:27
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In the given and related contexts, the "best practice" is usually the one that is supposed to be followed, unless there are any specific reasons against doing so. Therefore, it is used in a way that is synonymous to "recommended practice", which lends itself to a direct translation:

empfohlene Vorgehensweise


The problem with using the word "bewährt", as you suggested, is that it implies there is already some practical experience with the described practice. Which is, in my experience, often not true at the time of writing down the so-called "best practices" (in the same way that "frequently asked questions" have not necessarily been asked before, but are simply expected to come up a lot at the time of writing an "FAQ" section).

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Be aware that "best" in best practice does not mean that there is no better method but simply "something that most experts would agree on is a good solution". Thus using the literal translation to "beste" is not correct.

In addition to the other answers, I would like to propose:

Industriestandard

Example:

Einsatz von SSL/TLS bei Webservern is quasi Industriestandard.

or

Wir entwerfen Software nach modernsten Industriestandards.

Caveat: Industriestandard can also refer to an actual standard, like ISO or DIN.

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