Three Tips for Managing Technical Debt: While Maintaining Developer Velocity (and Sanity)

Technical debt and legacy applications need to be managed by senior engineers who have a good understanding the entire system as a whole, and how even minor changes made to complex code can affect other mission-critical services.Three Tips We’ve Found HelpfulTo wrap it up, here are some tips we learned the hard way for managing technical debt:Remember to always be cognizant of the problem..Continuously assess the current status vs..the risk of migrating to newer systems and technologies, and do not postpone the migration indefinitely..The longer it is postponed, the greater the debt will increase, and the problem will become much more difficult to manage and much more threatening to the core business..When legacy code is known to generate many bugs and issues on an ongoing basis, and touching the code can lead to weeks of labor just to repair problems, you will need to start planning how to migrate to new technologies.Do not be afraid to write code knowing that it is only an interim solution, and will be tossed out in a few months..This is part and parcel to building a more long-term and robust solution..Many times, we need to have a bridge between two technologies, to be able to maintain our SLAs, and business continuity..This is an example of behavior that relates to technical debt in Martin Fowler’s terms of loan and interest, when the goal is essentially important enough to deal with the ‘interest’ later.Always remember to reward and even celebrate the success of engineers who focus on reducing technical debt, even more than the release of new features..Give the challenge of managing legacy code to senior engineers, who will take ownership of mission-critical parts of the system that directly affect customers and production, and ensure that it is perceived as a vote of confidence and seniority — which is part of the engineering culture you create.>> Come meet AppsFlyer at DevOps Days Tel Aviv!And stay tuned for a recap of the excellent talk by our very own Michael Arenzon on Deploy & Destroy Testing environments..More to come….(We’re hiring, btw.). More details

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