In this article we'll examine reusability and its benefits, and we'll provide some advice on how developers can transform a good mathlet into a great one through coding guidelines and software engineering techniques. We'll present the results of an analysis of the mathlets that appear in the inagural issue of JOMA and discuss responses to a mathlet developer survey. In a future article we'll go into depth on some of the techniques we present here.
We can offer a perspective based on our experience of developing forty applets for middle school math -- these applets were hosted by the MathForum over the last two years. With that many applets to develop, we were keen to develop techniques for reusing our own code and that of others rather than developing each one from scratch.