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This is why I like coming here. I'd never thought of the tradeoff in that way before reading that quote, yet it makes perfect sense.

(I'm not arguing with your point at all, but of course there's software... and then there's software. Building might be cheap for both, but cost of deployment could be entirely different. Spacecraft control, microcode in an appliance, even certain classes of enterprise software all benefit from big up-front design because it's so expensive to patch later.)

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