Avoid the agony of acquiring code
"Always code as if the guy who ends up maintaining your code will know where you live."
These words seem particularly haunting when you’re neither the coder nor the maintainer, but the acquirer.
There are many reasons you might end up acquiring code, but one thing is certain: any pre-acquisition code audit happened in a lot less time than it will take you to digest, clean up and incorporate it into your business.
Reviewing screens full of snarled code from that hot new startup you just acquired, calculating the months of remediation and integration ahead, you realize that the due diligence was anything but. Why didn’t anyone spot these problems? How did we get into this mess?
A better question might be “Why did I expect anything different?”
After all, startups don’t spend much time worrying about functionality, maintainability, scalability and maintainability. They’re good at two things: cranking out sexy new features and piling up technical debt—debt that’s now your problem.