Software ages like people


I spent some time in a meeting with some representatives of our test organisation, and a senior test manager from one of our finance clients.

He quoted an analogy between software applications and people:

  • When software is first relieved, there is a novelty period, where the organisation is happy (relieved) to have launched the application
  • After the novelty, a high number of issues are found in the application, and the organisation may have to change a number of processes and people to support the application
  • At 2 years old, the application may go through the ‘terrible twos’ – the application is still a little unstable, with further instability from original developers who have left the organisation, leading to a loss in experience
  • At 5 years, the application will be much more stable, with many new updates applied to the original application
  • By 40 years old (yes, there are a number of successful applications of this age, especially in finance), the application will be very mature, causing very little grief, and surprisingly, you can now apply a lot of change (very regular rollouts) to an application of this age.

I found the analogy quite interesting – especially considering that ‘Digital Media’ is some 15 years old. So do we need to be worried about the teenage years?

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