Is software maintenance a problem? Today's standard answer is, “You bet it is.” The standard rationale for that standard answer is, “Look how much of our budget we're putting into software maintenance. If we'd only built the software better in the first place, we wouldn't have to waste all that money on maintenance.”
Well, I want to take the position that this standard answer is wrong. It's wrong, I want to say, because the standard rationale is wrong. The fact of the matter is, software maintenance isn't a problem, it's a solution!
What we are missing in the traditional view of software as a problem is the special significance of two pieces of information: The software product is “soft” (easily changed) compared to other, “harder,” disciplines.
Software maintenance is far less devoted to fixing errors (17%) than to making improvements (60%).In other words, software maintenance is a solution instead of a problem because in software maintenance we can do something that no one else can do as well, and because when we do it we are usually building new solutions, not just painting over old problems.
If software maintenance is seen as a solution and not as a problem, does that give us some new insight into how to do maintenance better? I take the position that it indeed does.... And the emphasis, when we do it, should be on maximising effectiveness, and not on minimising cost.
Posted by Madhukar Bhat,Project Leader, Release Engg at Oracle Private Limited|17 Sep, 2010
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Posted by Adesh Sharma,Software Developer at TIU consulting LLC Ohio USA|16 Sep, 2010
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Posted by Ramesh Iyer | 16 Sep, 2010
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