Software Is Details
Kevlin Henney is an independent consultant, trainer, reviewer and writer. His development interests, contributions and work with companies covers programming, people and practice. He has been a columnist for various magazines and web sites, a contributor to open- and closed-source software and a member of more committees than is probably healthy (it has been said that “a committee is a cul-de-sac down which ideas are lured and then quietly strangled”). He is co-author of two volumes in the Pattern-Oriented Software Architecture series, editor of 97 Things Every Programmer Should Know and co-editor of 97 Things Every Java Programmer Should Know.
“It’s just a detail.” Have you ever said that or been told that? Whether it’s about implementation or requirements, we often use the word detail to suggest that something is not important enough to worry about. There are so many things to worry about in software development that we need to prioritise — too much detail, not enough focus.
The problem is that in software, the details matter because that is what software is: lots of details brought together in combination. If we don’t focus on the details, we get debt, defects and delays.