Monday, June 20, 2011

The Importance of Progress

Some people don't like software updates. They find them annoying and ask things like "Why didn't they just make it right the first time?". These people are looking at it the wrong way.

Because making software isn't like making a bridge. Bridges you can't rebuild every couple of months to make minor improvements to. The money, time, and other costs make it unfeasible. But you can rebuild software that frequently. And that make software much more powerful, because it can incrementally progress.

Jeff Atwood, of Coding Horror has talked about this before.

Continuous improvement is better than starting good and staying there, because by improving, no matter where you start, you'll eventually surpass anything else that's not.

And this doesn't just apply to software. We can never be perfect, we can never know everything. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't try. Because we can get better, and that's better than staying the same.