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If it’s worth doing; it’s worth doing right
July 21, 2007|BlatheringsDevelopmentOp/Ed

If it’s worth doing; it’s worth doing right

Cletus from the Simpsons

"Just because I don’t care, doesn’t mean I don’t understand."
— Homer Simpson

I’m working on getting my Bronco set to pass PA inspection so I can start driving it again, and I keep running into various ridiculously retarded hack job inflicted upon my rig. Wires cut just inside the firewall and left dangling, red wire used for ground wires, 10 feet of speaker wire electrical taped together. Holy freakin’ crap, what was this guy bored? I bet it was Cletus here doin’ the ol’ uncle bob routine on my Bronco. Dude, that’s why they sell wire loom sleeves; go to the auto parts store once in a while will ya?

This type of behavior isn’t an automotive phenomenon either, the last house I lived in on the left coast, someone had slapped a bunch of mud (joint compound) on the walls when they finished the attic and never sanded it. The primed and painted it instead, so all of the corners had this iced-cake ripple effect going on that was impossible to sand down since it had been painted over.

Temptation

I can certainly understand why people do things this way – it’s easy. Since the belief is becoming more and more prevalent that the easy way is the best way, the junk tends to bubble to the surface more often. Quickly fading seem to be the days of high quality products being produced simply as a matter of doing business, and that doing a good job wasn’t a commodity to be charged extra for.

I don’t care about any of that. It’s simple – do it right the first time. There shouldn’t be any question.

Ubiquity of the Amateur

No more pervasive is this trend than in the web development world. Where tools and templates can be downloaded for free or purchased for very little money; where any Tom, Dick or Harry can be deluded into thinking they can do it themselves and it will be just as good as a professional job. In fact, it would be pretty easy to make a case for it quickly become the norm, rather than the exception. Very few (if any) other industries are capable of delivering such power into the hands of the muggles as the web industry – nor does any other industry seem so desperately interested in doing so. As automobiles get more and more complex, it gets harder and harder for anyone do anything to their own vehicle other than wash it.

The other thing that makes this such an easy switch to the dark side is the fact that you can easily hide all the rubbish from the client. If someone is paying to create a website, they probably have no idea what goes on in the background – so any would-be developer can download someones junk from Google and hack into to an application and declare it viable and charge money for it. keeping with the comparison to the automotive industry, in most states the mechanic is required to keep the defective parts on hand and be able to produce the busted pieces if asked. In Oregon – if the shop fails to do so, you are not required to pay for the repair until they can or do produce the parts. What are you going to do with this fancy new online store?

Okay, here in this 150 lines of code is where…..

or maybe

Check out this awesome class I wrote to handle the blah blah blah…

Not likely.

These type of duct-tape laden practices just screw everyone else in the process, and waste time to try and circumvent and fix. I for one could do without it. On the web and in my damned Bronco.

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2 comments

  • ryan
    July 23, 2007 at 10:17 pm

    I hope you’re taking lots of pictures of your progress on the Bronco!

  • July 24, 2007 at 3:29 pm

    You know, I’m really not. None of the stuff I have done is very photo worthy – or all that noticeable. I have some shots, but it may all come together as a start to finish as I go forward in the long term….

    Right now: I just want to drive it!

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