Why Picking Up a Software Project Half Way Through Can be Tricky

Posted by Paul on October 7, 2011

Most software developers prefer to start a project from scratch rather than pick up an existing project. Here are a few reasons why:

  1. Before being able to be productive, the developer will probably have to learn the existing system, the amount of time for this will be proportional to the complexity of the system.

  2. If the project is only half complete, there may be a reason for this - perhaps the original developers hit a particularly difficult technical obstacle.

  3. Every developer has different preferences for which frameworks and methodologies to use and which way to build a system. The chances are that the new developer wouldn't have built the system the way it's currently been built and may not be familiar with the particular nuances of this one.

  4. If the project has been abandoned and the client has had to find a new company/developer to take it on, the chances are it's already late or approaching deadlines.

  5. It's likely that time and money has already been spent to get the project to its current state, meaning there won't be as much of either for the rest of the project.
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