Code Debt

Code Debt.

I’ve been pondering a new term I heard the other day. The term is “code debt.” I heard it while listening to Jason Fried in this podcast and I can’t stop thinking about it.

debt to me is very real. It’s the debt you have to keep paying back
when you have software that needs to be maintained, upgraded, and
generally supported over years. The more debt you have the more your
life will be consumed by it. You could call it an obligation to support
a product or solution.

It’s a fantastic concept and something
I keep seeing. I’ve even experienced this myself. Where you take on a
project and build a software solution and then you end up having to
support and maintain it over the years.

Jason at 37signals
uses this to explain why you should release a smaller, simpler product.
Less code equals less future maintenance.

It really makes
you think twice about getting into a new project. More and more these
days I’m asking myself. What’s going to happen in 6 months when the
client realizes that this is not enough. That they’re going to want to
upgrade to the latest version, or have us write custom modules to do
new things. Or when something breaks.

Curious if you’ve experienced this or thought about it?  

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