Last updated on December 11th, 2017 at 10:39 am
Using the term interest to refer to the metaphorical interest charges that are associated with a technical debt is risky. The risk arises from confusing the properties of financial interest with the properties of the metaphorical interest charges on technical debt. Using an alternative term that makes the metaphor obvious can limit this risk. One such term is metaphorical interest charges, or for convenience, MICs.
MICs aren’t interest charges in the financial sense; rather, the MICs of a technical debt represent the total of reduced revenue, incidental opportunity costs, and increased costs of all kinds borne by the enterprise as a consequence of carrying that technical debt. (Actually, now that I think of it, MICs can include financial interest charges if we find it necessary to borrow money as a consequence of carrying technical debt.) Because the properties of MICs are very different from the properties of financial interest charges, we use the term MICs to avoid confusion with the term interest from the realm of finance.
- MICs can fluctuate dramatically
- MICs on technical debt can be unpredictable
- MICs can differ for different instances of the same kind of technical debt
- MICs can sometimes be deferred or advanced without penalty
- MICs on technical debt can be difficult to measure
- MICs can change when other debts are retired
- Where the misunderstandings about MICs come from
I examine each of these properties in more detail in the posts listed above.
Available: here; Retrieved: March 16, 2017