Sunday, November 9, 2008

In love with my code

A problem I've been having for a long time is the fact that I "fall in love" with my code. I consider myself as an artist and my code as my art, the problem arises when I'm choosing a path based upon the code I'm going to write, usualy I find a certain technology more appealing to me and I use it but sometimes the time to finish that piece of code will be longer then it would if I had picked another "less sexy" technology. As I grew up and matured I looked back to the times I made choices which today looks like a complete waste of time, I don't regret these choices because I learned new technologies which I wouldn't learn otherwise.

As an army programmer and as a programmer working as an employee in another company which I was after my army service was over - making such "mistakes" doesn't cost you money, now that I own my own company these mistakes do cost money and avoiding them is a must.

I have many conversations with my friend: Zak Dechovich the founder and CEO of Reimage ( about marketing and time to market, as an ex programmer he understand where I'm comming from because he experienced it first hand in marketing his "XP repair" product. In a conversation we had a month ago I told him that I have a product that is 70% ready that can filter traffic based on keywords, he asked whether I can release something to the market right now? I told him that I can take the redirecting platform ( and start to market this version within a week, and so I did, that was a good advise on this part and a wise decision on mine.

Today I made another decision, I have core functionality of an "SSL" hijacker which allows me to inspect and modify encrypted SSL data without alerting the browser, however the communication module I wrote which is based on shared memory and named pipes is too slow for me and it reaches a stage that it is so complex that finishing it would take three months. I sat down to see what are my alternatives and found a solution that would enable me to release it in two to three weeks, a good solution that will be more stable then my original one, it's a little "less sexy" but as the artists of the past, I need to walk the fine line between doing my art and pleasing my patron, my patron is the "bottom line" :)

I'm happy I'm able to make such decisions because using a simpler and cleaner technologies means a more stable product, which is easier to understand and maintain. My friend Zak quotes civilization IV: "A product is perfect when you can no longer remove features from it".



360sqr said...

KOMODIA'S TECHNICAL BLOG is a blog run by the KOMODIA team. The aim of KOMODIA'S TECHNICAL BLOG is to explore product and technical development, in depth.
The blog aims to provide an insight into the development of Komodia's products, software and technologies through the story of their development process and technical issues. The blog will also highlight the impact that these products have made on our lives and will touch on some broader societal issues as they arise.
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Mark Antony said...

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It's a common struggle to balance creativity with practicality in coding, but making wise decisions leads to more successful outcomes.
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