Sunday, March 28, 2010

The Economics of Perfect Software

FYI – Very interesting Sunday read - The Economics of Perfect Software


Ask 100 CEOs of software companies if they want to ship software with bugs. What will they say? 50 won’t answer at all, saying something about how bugs are a huge problem in the industry that needs to be addressed; 40 will say “Of course not!” and promptly call their shark tank in preparation for a lawsuit; 9 will hang their heads and say “we can’t help it”; and that last 1 will look you straight in the eye and say “Absolutely.”


Software can’t be written bug-free, so if you want to ship perfect software you have to fix the bugs that burrow their way into your code.


As you’d expect, the more time and money you throw at fixing bugs, the more bugs you’ll fix. But, unfortunately, our old nemesis from economics, the Law of Diminishing Returns, applies to this process. Formally, the Law states that “the marginal production of a factor of production starts to progressively decrease as the factor is increased, in contrast to the increase that would otherwise be normally expected.” In regular-people English, that just means that how much you get out of a process isn’t the same as what you put in across the board. Instead, you end up with a quick ramp on output at the low end of input, and a long tail on output at the high end of input.


For example, imagine a program has 100 bugs, and we know it will take 100 units of effort to find and fix all 100 of those bugs. The Law of Diminishing Returns tells us that the first 40 units of effort would find the first 70 bugs, the next 30 units of effort would find the next 20 bugs, and the next 30 units of effort would find the last 10 bugs.




Saturday, March 27, 2010

Earth Hour 2010 is TODAY - Take action for CLIMATE CHANGE

PLEASE flip off your lights today for ONE hour @ 8:30 p.m. local time to make a stand against climate change - Earth Hour 2010 -

About Vishal

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Check out my new Chrome Netflix Extension!

Chrome Netflix Extension
A super-fast Netflix extension with integrated search and support for multiple categories.

  • Tip #1: Mouse over titles to see their descriptions as a tooltip!
  • Tip #2: The extension auto-fetches the latest titles from Netflix every half hour. If you would like to customize that or the extension in general, click on the "Customize" link at the botton of the extension popup.
  • Coming soon (a week): Custom Netflix feeds! - Your queue and recommendations (it's an optional feature - only for Netflix subscribers)

About Vishal

© 2008 Vishal V. Shah. All rights reserved. Contents of this web site reflect my personal work and is not representative of my employer.