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I tend to err on the side of caution with stuff like this, for instance when inheriting a code-base I assume the previous author actually knew what he/she was doing. But sometimes (not often) that can work against you as well. For instance when after spending sufficient time with said codebase you realize the original writer was entirely out of their depth and this was likely the first time they'd attempted to write something this complex.

But more often than not it is the presumption of intelligence that pays off.

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