I'm attempting to get into the habit of writing unit tests regularly with my code, but I've read that first it's important to write testable code. This question touches on SOLID principles of writing testable code, but I want to know if those design principles are beneficial (or at least not harmful) without planning on writing tests at all. To clarify - I understand the importance of writing tests; this is not a question on their usefulness.
To illustrate my confusion, in the piece that inspired this question, the writer gives an example of a function that checks the current time, and returns some value depending on the time. The author points to this as bad code because it produces the data (the time) it uses internally, thus making it difficult to test. To me, though, it seems like overkill to pass in the time as an argument. At some point the value needs to be initialized, and why not closest to consumption? Plus, the purpose of the method in my mind is to return some value based on the current time, by making it a parameter you imply that this purpose can/should be changed. This, and other questions, lead me to wonder if testable code was synonymous with "better" code.
Is writing testable code still good practice even in the absence of tests?
Is testable code actually more stable? has been suggested as a duplicate. However, that question is about the "stability" of the code, but I am asking more broadly about whether the code is superior for other reasons as well, such as readability, performance, coupling, and so forth.