re: Badly Programmed Apps Costing IT More
If we turn the Wayback Machine (from the Sherman & Peabody cartoon) to the very early '80s, you'll find some really lousy COBOL code written by people who stumbled into computer programming, never formally studied that language, then resisted structured programming techniques used by "rookie" coders who were learning it in night school as they earned their Associate's or Bachelor's degree in Computer Science at an accredited college/university. The veteran application programmers, who became project leaders, had coded in RPG and dabbled in BAL (IBM's Assembly language). In my opinion, the crappy (spaghetti logic, unnecessarily complex, terribly inefficient, poorly documented) code they wrote led to the adandonment of entire applications. Companies bought vendor software packages instead of maintaining those monstrosities. Whatever wasn't trashed got sent to India because three average (or better), well-trained Indian COBOL programmers cost the same as one average U.S. COBOL programmer. Also, COBOL to this day as far as I know, isn't a forbidden word in India. Those people gladly maintain or rewrite the "quick & dirty" COBOL programs that were originally written by weak programmers or non-programmers (like accountants and ex-secretaries). Here's a quote we joked about that was a bit too close to the truth: "There's never enough time to do it right, but there's always enough time to do it over." If I may opine on H1B visas, there's nothing wrong with skimming a giant population's (Indian or Chinese) "best & brightest" and bringing them here. The problem is sending work being done by average people here to be done by average people there. It's the same problem when we ship average-talent foreigners here to cheaply do work that can be done by comparable Americans.