Architects and builders are a lot like programmers. They spend huge amounts of effort on things that are rarely used ... obscure frills and hidden facets of their structures which, truth be told, actual customers spend much less time on than it took to develop.

But on the other hand, that sort of quietly focused mental energy pays big dividends in ensuring that the visible parts of a building, or a piece of software, get designed and implemented properly, gracefully. And on the rare occasions when a hidden feature is needed, there it is --- like a reserve parachute, an emergency brake, a safety net ... or, in less critical circumstances, simply as a delightful signal that somebody cared enough to do the right thing without thinking of recognition or reward.

(see ^zhurnal 18 December 1999, OnSupererogation, and the early musing of 15 April 1999, WebGardening)

Tuesday, May 01, 2001 at 20:32:13 (EDT) = Datetag20010501


(correlates: InBalance, ConfucianHomilies, What Do You Think of When You Run, ...)