Quality of Design

This weekend I had an opportunity to look at an Access 2003 platform database/application, and it reminded me that quality of design can exceed platform capabilities. As any developer who has ever dealt with Access, especially ancient versions, knows, the product is a kludge upon a kludge. It tends to encourage bad design at the outset because of its lack of data/presentation layer separation, and it's crimes against productivity (in terms of user interface choices) are myriad. But the application I looked at was atypical of Access-based design in two distinct ways: it was designed with a mostly correct data model, making it migration-friendly even after all these years; and it was developed with a degree of restraint that avoided at least many of the traps of Access applications. That isn't to say it was the perfect product model, because Access just doesn't manage to engender perfection, but it was one of those pleasant review experiences where it so easy to see how to move it ahead without damaging its quality of design, it's functionality, or sacrificing future opportunities to the gods of necessity.

The takeaway from this is simple: platform can be overcome by good design to a great extent.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.