How to learn best practices?

I am an independent developer and work on small projects. Since I work alone, I feel that I am not learning best practices that are used in industry. How I can learn best practices that are followed in the computer software industry? How I can improve my code quality?
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rpkhareAsked:
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luciveroConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Check this out and see if it is what you are looking for:
Best practices for software development projects
This article provides a list of best practices for improving the success of your
software development projects.
http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/websphere/library/techarticles/0306_perks/perks2.html
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cdboshCommented:
You could try this previously posted answer:

http://www.experts-exchange.com/Software/Quality_Assurance/Q_23765949.html

Oh, wait - that was from you, too.

Do you have a follow up question to what I had already provided?  Have you tried any of those suggestions?

If you do some research in "agile" methodologies, you'll find mention of test-driven development, where you first write the stubs and automation harnesses that will test your module or class - then you code the insides until it passes all of the tests.

Another benefit of this technique is that you have a built-in, automated regression test suite ready to execute when you make future changes / fixes to the module or class.

Agile also promotes pair programming, where two developers work simultaneously on the same code - not just the same application, but the exact same code.  This is similar to my earlier suggestion of code reviews, and is like the agile replacement for code reviews.

Still, it requires you find someone to work with - somehow...
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rpkhareAuthor Commented:
My previous question pointed towards testing. Here I want to know about best practices followed by industry from Requirements study to application design, project management, estimation and deployment. After requirement study, how the layout is prepared. Who prepares the database schema? How other design are prepared?
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