80/20 Rule Fallacy

I think I’ve first read about it some years back from Joe Spolsky…

There’s general perception in software that if we implement 20% of the features that competitors have and charge only 20% of their price – we’ll win 80% of the market.

The problem with this logic is the fact that in software these 20% are constantly changing from one client to another. Out of set of features {A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J} client 1 will need {A, B} and client 2 will need {E, F}both needing 20%, but different 20% each.

It is especially true in a complex distributed software middleware. People don’t acquire GridGain, Terracotta, or GigaSpaces because they provide minimally exact feature set they are looking for for a cheap price. In fact, most companies starting with GridGain don’t even realize they will need certain features at all or that the certain features even exist. In fact, we often see that features that were important at the beginning becoming less important as the project grows and vice versa.

One of the benefits of GridGain’s Cloud Application Platform is that it can grow with your project needs. You can start with something simple like utilizing automatic discovery and end up using complex affinity-based MapReduce or continuation-based Scala-DSL driven processing.

Food for thoughts…

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