|No such thing as a small change|
I have made quite a bit of money, over the past fifteen(!) years, from roughly 350,000+/- lines of (non-Perl...) source code written by “a complete stranger.”
Quite a bit of that code is (if I may say so myself...) brilliant. ;-)
But, today, I don’t remember a single word of it. Any time I have to re-approach any of it, I have to learn it all over again. (Because, if I don’t, I know I’m gonna <!> it up... as would, of course, be true, no matter who originally wrote it.)
And so, this is why I am very grateful to “the previous programmer” for the careful attention that he placed upon his work at the time. This is what makes it ever-so-much easier for me, today, to decipher what he did ... and what he was thinking when he did it. (Because today, sincere truth be told, I have no idea!!)
It makes not the slightest bit of difference, after all, that “the previous programmer” was, in fact, yours truly. (That was, in fact, fifteen years ago...)
Most of us, in this business, have the luxury of blaming our sorrows upon “the previous programmer.” But my personal experience over the past fifteen years quietly confirms just how much information is lost forever unless “the previous programmer” took care to pay very-careful attention at the time . . .