Monday, February 1, 2010

Software Development

I finally figured out how companies make money/lose money in software development. Software development is a tough business to be in. Nearly all projects I've worked on have broken even at best. Most of the time they fall far short of their goals. This was so common that I just assumed that all sofware projects were doomed.

Now as my hair turns gray and my wrinkles deepen I finally realize that this simple phenomenon, backed by years of emprical evidence and darkening circles under my eyes, is neither good nor bad. What happens after the project is where we can place a "good" or "bad" moniker. Yes, software development is hard business. It is impossible to do a project on time and on budget because there are so many unknowns and developers are hopeless perfectionists--not to mention, any developer worth spit will spend 8 hours to do something elegantly that will save them 2 hours.

What happens next is the buyer of the software hopefully uses the code to increase productivity and fire some staff and merrily use the new application for years and years. Meanwhile the hapless developer moves on to the next doomed project to repeat the cycle over and over. The secret, only now it dawns on me, is to simply resell the code over and over...without violating any contracts, of course. I've seen it done before, but it never registered before.

An even better example of entrepreneurship is to repackage open source software and sell it as your own...not the code of course. So the moral for the day is to code and code, but to sell and sell. Before chasing something new an sometimes exciting, your best bet is to find some boring old "vert similar" project/client and sell the same product/service/application. Maybe after the second or third time around you might even make some money.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing this article in your blog.

    It was very nice.Looking for more..................


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