8. Modifiability

It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.

—Charles Darwin

Change happens.

Study after study shows that most of the cost of the typical software system occurs after it has been initially released. If change is the only constant in the universe, then software change is not only constant but ubiquitous. Changes happen to add new features, to alter or even retire old ones. Changes happen to fix defects, tighten security, or improve performance. Changes happen to enhance the user’s experience. Changes happen to embrace new technology, new platforms, new protocols, new standards. Changes happen to make systems work together, even if they were never designed ...

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