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August 4, 2004

Is a software project dead and worthless if development ceases?

In these days of continuous development where we're constantly reconsidering, revamping, refactoring, redesigning, rethinking, recoding what's been done in the past, it seems there is a lack of credibility on a software project if development slows or stops. If you're talking with another developer about some software you use is it such a terrible blow for them to say "is that even being developed anymore?" or "they haven't released an update for more than 10 months?"

I agree that the problems that computers and software solve are constantly changing and still being defined, but is it impossible to think that a certain piece of software isn't being developed anymore because it does what it needs to? To me, if a software package does the job I need it to and doesn't have any obvious bugs I'm not sure I care if someone continues to develop on it.

I would reserve the right to move to another package if my needs changed or some major flaw started to show, but to move just because development slows or stops seems silly.

Posted by mike at August 4, 2004 3:15 PM