Sunday, March 21, 2010

Technical debt is not bad!

Technical debt is usually thought of as a notorious thing indicating bad (or no) design, and leads to projects failure after several iterations.

Actually, this is not true. Refactoring is a constant effort done by the development team even with the most intelligent designs. Developers (and their designs) matures "while" working on the project. This maturity emerges from that following facts:
  • The level of understanding of the business domain gets clearer.
  • Seeing the design at work develops more brighter design ideas.
  • Development work is the most effective learning experience for developers. So, the more you develop, the more you learn about design concepts, and the more you see opportunities for improving the existing design.
This is why teams should find a way to incorporate paying technical debt every now and then. By incorporate, I mean to reflect on it as part of every iteration, or may be dedicate an entire iteration for it if needed.

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