Software design trade offs
A trade-off or tradeoff is a situational decision that involves diminishing or losing one quality, quantity or property of a set or design in return for gains in other aspects. In simple terms, a tradeoff is where one thing increases and another must decrease. Tradeoffs stem from limitations of many origins, including simple physics - for instance, only a certain volume of objects can fit into a given space, so a full container must remove some items in order to accept any more, and vessels can carry a few large items or multiple small items.
Tradeoffs also commonly refer to different configurations of a single item, such as the tuning of strings on a guitar to enable different notes to be played, as well as allocation of time software design trade offs attention towards different tasks. The concept of a tradeoff implies a tactical or strategic choice made with full comprehension of the advantages and disadvantages of each setup.
An economic example is the decision to invest in stocks, which are risky but carry great potential software design trade offs, versus bonds, which are generally safer but with lower potential returns. The term is also used widely in an evolutionary context, in which case the processes of natural selection and sexual selection are in reference as the ultimate decisive factors.
The concept of a trade-off is often used to describe situations in everyday life. Similarly, trash cans that are used inside and then taken out to the street and emptied into a Dumpster can be small software design trade offs large. A large trash can does not need to be taken out to the Dumpster so often, but it may become so heavy when full that the user risks strain or software design trade offs injury when moving it. The choice of waste receptacle is a trade-off between the frequency of needing to take the trash out for the Dumpster versus the ease and safety of use.
In the case of food waste, a second trade-off presents itself as large trash cans are more likely to sit for a long time in the kitchen, leading to higher levels of decomposing food indoors and a potential pest attraction. With a small trash can, software design trade offs can will be taken out to the Dumpster more often, thus eliminating the persist rot that attracts pests.
Of course, a user of a large trashcan could carry the can outside frequently anyway, but the heavier can would weigh more and the user would have to think more about when to take the can out, or confine themselves to a schedule, software design trade offs to a smaller can which is evidently full when it takes taking out. In cold climates, mittens in which all the fingers are in the same compartment serve well to keep the hands warm, but this arrangement also confines finger movement and prevents the full range of hand function; gloves, with their separate fingers, do not have this drawback, but they do not keep the fingers as warm as mittens do.
As such, with mittens and gloves, warmth versus dexterity is the trade-off. In a like fashion, warm coats are often bulky and hence they impede freedom of movement for the wearer. Thin coats, such as those worn by winter sports athletes, give the wearer more freedom of movement, but they are not as warm.
When copying music from compact discs to a computer, lossy compression formats, such as MP3are used software design trade offs to save hard disk space, but information is "thrown away" to the detriment of sound quality. Lossless compression schemes, such as FLAC or ALAC take much more disc space, but do not affect the sound quality as much, thus providing better sound. Large cars can carry many people five or moreand since they have larger crumple zones, they may be safer in an accident.
However they also tend to be heavy and often not very aerodynamic and hence have relatively poor fuel economy. Small cars like the Smart Car can only carry software design trade offs people, and their light weight means they are very fuel efficient. At the same time, the smaller size and weight of small cars means that they have smaller crumple zones, which means occupants are less protected in case of an accident. In addition, software design trade offs a small car has an accident with a larger, heavier car, the occupants of the smaller car will fare more poorly.
Thus car size large versus small involves multiple tradeoffs regarding passenger capacity, accident safety and fuel economy. In athletics, sprint running demands different physical attributes from running a marathon.
As such, the two contests have distinct events in competitions such as the Olympicsand each pursuit features distinct teams of athletes. Whether a professional runner is software design trade offs suited to marathon running versus sprinting is a trade-off based on the runner's morphology and physiology e. This tradeoff is chiefly from the perspective of a sport's recruiter, who decides what role a prospective athlete would best suit on a team.
In economics a trade-off is expressed in terms of the opportunity cost of a particular choice, which is the loss of the most preferred alternative given up. A tradeoff, then, involves a sacrifice that must be made to obtain a certain product, service or experience, rather than others that could be made or obtained using the same required resources. For example, for a person going to a basketball game, their opportunity cost is the loss of the alternative of watching a particular television program at home.
Many factors affect the tradeoff environment within a particular country, including availability of raw materials, a skilled labor force, machinery for producing a product, technology and capital, market rate to produce that product on reasonable time scale, and so forth.
A trade-off in economics is often illustrated graphically by a Pareto frontier named after the economist Vilfredo Paretowhich shows the greatest or least amount of one thing that can be attained for each of various given amounts of the other. As an example, in production theory the trade-off between output of one good and output of another is illustrated graphically by the production possibilities frontier.
The Pareto frontier is also used in multi-objective optimization. In financethe capital asset pricing model includes an efficient frontier that shows the highest level of expected return that any portfolio could have given any particular level of risk, as measured by the variance of portfolio return.
In biology and microbiologytradeoffs occur when a beneficial change in one trait is linked to a detrimental change in another trait. Tradeoffs are important in engineering. Similarly, tradeoffs are used to maximise power efficiency in medical devices whilst guaranteeing the required measurement quality .
In demographytradeoff examples may include maturity, fecundityparental care, paritysenescenceand mate choice. For example, the higher the fecundity number of offspringthe lower the parental care that each offspring will receive.
Parental care as a function of fecundity would show a negative sloped linear graph. A related phenomenon, known as demographic compensation, arises when the different components of species life cycles survival, growth, fecundity, etc show negative correlations across the distribution ranges  . For example, survival may be higher towards the northern edge of the distribution, while fecundity or growth increases towards the south, leading to a compensation that allows the species to persist along an environmental gradient.
Contrasting trends in life cycle components may arise through tradeoffs in resource allocationbut also through independent but opposite responses to environmental conditions.
In computer sciencetradeoffs are viewed as a tool of the trade. A program can often run faster if it uses more memory a space—time tradeoff. Consider the following examples:.
Strategy board games often involve tradeoffs: In a worst-case scenario, a chess player might even tradeoff the loss of a valuable piece even the Queen to protect the King. In Goyou might trade thickness for influence. Ethics often involves competing interests that must be traded off against each other, such as the interests software design trade offs different people, software design trade offs different principles e.
In medicinepatients and physicians are often faced with difficult decisions involving tradeoffs. One example is localized prostate cancer where patients need to weigh the possibility of a prolonged life expectancy against possible stressful or unpleasant treatment side-effects patient trade-off. Governmental tradeoffs are among the most controversial political and social difficulties of any time. All of politics can be viewed as a series of tradeoffs based upon which core values are most core to the most people or politicians.
Whether it's a project manager doing software acquisitions or an enterprise architect designing an application, in successful software development, it is important to understand the traditional trade-offs between cost, quality and time.
For those who are not familiar with this age-old truism, the general rule for any undertaking is that one can balance any two of them only at the expense of the third. You forgot to provide an Email Address.
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And, finally, with all other factors being equal, when creating cheap, high-quality goods and services, more time will be needed. It may seem like an obvious point, but like it or not, many successful software developers have discovered that some variation of the 2 out of 3 gambit resonates through just about everything we do. Software design trade offs months ago I was asked to assist a large, billion-dollar computer provider with creating training for one of its larger clients.
A common enough request, yet in this case the corporation was attempting to dictate cut-rate prices as well as delivery times. Again, while not too unusual, the time and cost constraints were so draconian that anyone with any basic experience with the pick two gambit could see that the company had virtually insured that an inferior product would ultimately be software design trade offs.
I, like many others, respectfully declined their terms. We simply had more profitable ways to spend our time. Not too surprisingly, six months later the panic calls began. Not only had this would-be training project enraged the larger, multi-billion dollar client, but the materials clearly demonstrated several major conceptual flaws.
Moreover, given that the majority of the developers were from cultures that traditionally do not tolerate such things, their first trainer had unfairly been thrown to the wolves. The effects of this self-imposed, tragic choice of two led to spending more money to fix the project than would have been spent if anyone had bothered to price things properly the first time. Even when tasked to help, citing the project's over-promise and under-deliver problems, other industry-savvy consultants, all of whom were tired of the project manager's penny-pinching and promise-breaking, had understandably distanced themselves.
Having consulting, as well as much training experience on their topic de jour, I was given the difficult task of having to talk around the training defects and content deficits. While a fool will work for a sage's pay, the reverse is simply not true. The result is that, in talent as well as technology, while great values can indeed be found from time to time, such findings are rare.
More often than not, one must eventually face the reality that one invariably gets no more, and certainly no less, than software design trade offs one pays for.
To put the idea in a slightly different light, an excellent professional project management friend of mine once noted, "If there is money enough to do things over, why is there not enough to do things right? It's a hard lesson to learn, but successful project managers and enterprise architects know software design trade offs when it comes to software development, there are always tradeoffs to be made, and more often than not, those software design trade offs can be evaluated by choosing which of the cost, quality and time trifecta will have software design trade offs suffer.
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