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Re: [xml-dev] How to be nimble, agile in the face of changing technologies?

On 2/1/2012 3:45 PM, John Cowan wrote:
> Andrew Welch scripsit:
>> One approach is: do nothing. Incur that cost if and when it's actually
>> needed, don't waste your time/effort/money on it now.
> I have never cared for this idea, and indeed there are many obvious
> counterexamples.  Tim Bray's stuff on internationalization (back
> when it was a new and radical idea) showed that the cost of i18n at
> development time is about 10%, whereas after the fact it's about 100%.
I don't think there's a hard-and-fast rule.  You have to estimate the 
likelihood of future change later and compare against the cost of wasted 
effort now.  I do think our estimates of the former are much more 
error-prone though.

If you knew for sure which thing you were absolutely going to have to 
deal with eventually, you should certainly plan for it now.  The problem 
is when you don't know.  Then there will be many things (maybe 10!) that 
you could decide to build in abstractions for now.  But perhaps only one 
of them will be needed.

Or said another way, let's say we believe the 10/100 rule above. What is 
the likelihood that project X will be adopted in another locale than the 
one for which it was originally designed?  If it's less than 10%, you 
shouldn't bother with i18n up front.

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