Why software ends up complex

from Alex Gaynor

Nov 30, 2020, 12:00:00 AM
Complexity in software, whether it’s a programming languages, an API, or a user interface, is generally regarded as a vice. And yet complexity is exceptionally common, even though no one ever sets out to build something complex. For people interested in building easy to use software, understanding the causes of complexity is critical. Fortunately, I believe there is a straightforward explanation. The most natural implementation of any feature request is additive, attempting to leave all other elements of the design in place and simply inserting one new component: a new button in a UI or a new parameter to a function.