“Complexity of IT Systems Will Be Our Undoing”
Wednesday, 10 November, 2010 3 Comments
Did you know that I am not alone?
Please tell me I’m not alone!!!
Well here is pretty emphatic reassurance for me that I am not – just the blogging equivalent of the guy howling at the moon – exaggerating the nature and extent of the problem.
This time it’s not from a business, economic, environmental, political or sociological perspective but from the “upper echelons of IT”.
You know the most ironic thing is that Roger knows that Ontonix already have a provide a “hard science” solution! I did wonder why, instead of “waxing lyrical” about the problem, he wasn’t talking about available [tried and tested] solutions….then I read the bits about a patent and consultancy!
The basic problem is the larger and more expensive an IT project is, the more likely it is to fail. You can do a lot of analysis as to why that is. You can say maybe we’re not using the right methodology, or communications is failing, or any number of things. But ultimately the only variable that appears to correlate closely with failure is complexity.So my basic proposal is that as systems get bigger and more expensive they get more complex and complex things are harder to deal with and therefore more likely to fail. So if the system is under, say $750,000, it has a good chance of succeeding. Once it approaches $2 million it has less than a 50% chance of succeeding. And by the time it gets much larger than that, the chances of success drop to near zero.