I wrote a CGI application that was to be incredibly simple, just a portal for user-defined links. This program, while being written, experienced many design/function changes from above. I had to patch code together to get it done quickly (the client didn't know that changes = time); in the end, it's become an ungodly mess. It usually takes me five minutes to find a problem, and 30 seconds to fix it. I dread doing an update for my code has become "write-only."
I'm writing some new code in my leisure time. I could have written without and source formatting or comments, but I know from my previous experience that updating badly formed code takes all the fun out of programming. I've had many side projects die because in my hasty attempt to complete my idea before it left the station without me aboard, I left no clues for me to pick up where I had left off. This recent "fun" project is taking longer than expected, but it's worth it.
I think that given certain outside variables (your %ENV :), one should choose between the quick-and-dirty or the refined, elegant method. Both have some advantages and disadvantages (namely time and revision-ease). To use a driving metaphor, it's always a pleasure to take the scenic route, but sometimes you need to get there on time. A healthy mix of both seems the best way to go, if possible.
John J Reiser
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