I have recoded sometimes, for very small projects, or for small portions of a larger project. It is a refreshing experience, which can lead to improvements. However, for large applications, I would rather follow Joel Spolsky's advice about
reading code and
in reply to Value of "RE"-coding for the newbie
Summarizing: rewriting code is hard, because programmers have trouble reading code. Once you know how to read, you can face a rewriting task with more confidence.
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