software engineering where@@ wallSt @@

When I look at a durable product to be used for a long time, I judge its quality by its details. Precision, finishing, raw material, build for wear and tear…. Such products include wood furniture, musical instruments, leather jackets, watches, … I often feel Japanese and German (among others) manufacturers create quality.

Quick and dirty wall street applications are low quality by this standard, esp. for code maintainers.

Now software maintainability requires a slightly different kind of quality. I judge that quality, first and foremost, by correctness/bugs, then coverage for edge/corner cases such as null/error handling, automated tests, and code smell. Architecture underpins but is not part of code quality. Neither is performance, assuming our performance is acceptable.

There's a single word that sums up what's common between manufacturing quality and software quality — engineering. Yes software *is* engineering but not on wall street. Whenever I see a piece of quality code, it's never in a fast-paced environment.

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