How to write shit code that works

There are three basic approaches to writing software that I know of. The first is always strive for technical excellence. This is great if you can do it – I’ve never worked in a place where technical excellence was always priority #1 with no compromise. If that’s you, then you probably don’t need to read this.

The second way is throw code around and hope it works – this is far too common. You look at the problem in front of you, and you grab a solution that’s good enough for now, doesn’t blow the budget (time and money) too badly, and leave the mess to be cleaned up (or worked around) later. Industry wide, this is the norm – a consequence of always focusing on the short term.

The third is a pragmatic compromise – try to make it as good as possible, while recognising that parts of the system will be, well, shit. That’s what I want to talk about here.

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