This talk, presented at I.T.A.K.E 2013, explores options for revising, repairing, and extending good, bad, and ugly code. It takes a hard look at some good, bad, and ugly code written by the presenter and others.
Most people work with code that has both good and bad parts. The challenge with such a mix is how to modify what’s there without damaging the good parts, making bad things worse, or ugly situations even uglier. Sometimes we get an opportunity to make major repairs. But more often, we can only make small, incremental improvements. What we can do is constrained by cost, consistency, and compatibility concerns. Living with good, bad, and even ugly code is never easy.
But as Clint Eastwood says, “Sometimes if you want to see a change for the better, you have to take things into your own hands.”