A Foolish Consistency—Jon Kalb

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A very interesting article that we should all read.

A Foolish Consistency

by Jon Kalb

From the article:

Ralph Waldo Emerson famously said, “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines.” I don’t think he was talking about code, but that statement couldn’t be more relevant to software engineers.

I’ve experienced a scenario like this a number of time in my career:

I’m sharing a new approach to writing code that offers some clear improvements to what we’ve been doing. Perhaps it is more readable, more efficient, or safer. But the response that I hear from colleagues is, “But we can’t do that here. We have <some large number> lines of code where we didn’t do it that way, so it wouldn’t be consistent.”

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