Cost of Solution vs. Cost of Problem
Post from September 20, 2007 (↻ June 1, 2020), filed under Everything Else.
This and many other posts are also available as a pretty, well-behaved ebook: On Web Development.
Problems cost money, and problems require solutions that also cost money. This is known in all industries, but in many cases, there is focus on only one side: What does the solution of the problem cost? This ignores the other side, the cost of the problem.
Evaluating cost of solution is simple: You determine the time and money you need to develop and implement it. You’re looking at the resources needed. Cost of problem, however, equals the price of doing nothing. That is, for what I know, an important economic principle known from cost-benefit analyses.
I recently wrote more on the matter for Germany’s Dr. Web mag, including some detail and examples. Unfortunately, that prevents me from providing more information in this place. The point is this: Always consider the cost of the problem in order to prioritize appropriately. Some changes are unnecessary and expensive, others are critical and must not be delayed.
If you cannot wait until I share any more detail: Jeff Thull’s been on the same page.
If you have a question or suggestion about what I write, please leave a comment or a message.
Have a look at the most popular posts, possibly including:
Perhaps my most comprehensive book: The Web Development Glossary (2020). With explanations and definitions for literally thousands of terms from Web Development and related fields, building on Wikipedia as well as the MDN Web Docs.
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