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Syntax - Tasty Web Development Treats

Hasty Treat - Technical Debt

In this Hasty Treat, Scott and Wes talk about technical debt — what it is, why does it occur, and some techniques for reducing and avoiding it.

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Show Notes

03:17 - What is technical debt

  • Outdated or hard to update code
  • If you groan when you have to work on it, it might be a sign of technical debt
  • Brittle code, easily breakable
  • Quirks and features

06:55 - Why does it occur

  • Over time, any garden left un-pruned will become overgrown
  • Many people, many code styles
  • Using hot new frameworks / techniques
    • This is why seasoned developers don’t jump on new things
  • You allow users to do literally anything

13:18 - Techniques for avoiding it

  • Deny your FOMO of new things
  • Abstract
  • Write good tests
  • Don’t put off refactors
  • Update dependencies frequently
  • Good standards
    • Etsy has thousands of devs

20:08 - Examples in the real world

  • Airline websites open in new windows all the time
  • Cellphone carrier flashes the screen 100x

22:15 - Unfixable technical debt

  • Agency work sometimes
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Jan Dvorak

I'm very much focused in keeping on top of being up to date with dependencies and in most of my jobs it has become mine responsibility because nobody wanted to do which lead to insane amount of technical debt.