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Wednesday, November 09, 2005

What happens when t approaches 0?: "One of the interesting topics that came up today at Software Trends was “what happens when the time to develop a new application approaches zero?”"

This is something I have really been thinking about lately. Software is becoming so easy to develop, and the rules around how software should be developed just don't apply any more. When it takes me longer to document a class then it does to write the class, something is wrong (btw, this is exactly what consultants are paid to do). You want documentation - read the code. It is guaranteed to be up to date, should contain comments about why a certain path was chosen. Who really reads these 100+ page documents on "architecture" anyway?

Back to the question: What happens when t approaches zero? Economies change. Two things become much more important then they are today: Ideas and Communication. Today these things matter, but not as much. If you have fantastic execution, your communication can be less then perfect. If you have an OK idea and great execution, you will be ok.

How will this change an economy? If you are not the one having the ideas or writing the software, then you are blocking the communication channel. Increasingly we are becoming a society the favours the educated (I don't like that term, but I like "intelligence" even less - maybe hard working?) over the rich. If you don't understand the new world you are going to have big problems.

You know the 55 year olds you work with now, and how some just don't seem to "get it". Well it is going to be 10x worse 25 years from now.

(btw: If you really want to think about something that is going to massively change the economy, consider the singularity. What do we do when we are finally made obsolete by computers? Maybe a better read - A Brave New World.)

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