Ethics... and the lack of it.

Kay C Lan lan.kc.macmail at
Wed Dec 2 03:17:05 EST 2009


I agree with Bill and Jim, this isn't ethics, it's business.

Continuing with Bill's decking analogy.

If you asked a bunch of builders how much his $10,000 deck was worth, I
imagine you'd get a bunch of quotes on how much each of these guys would
charge to build the same thing. On the other hand, if you knew how much the
home was worth before the deck was built, asking a few Real Estate Agents
for appraisals would give you the increase in value. Unfortunately, as
current events prove, there are a lot of other things that can effect home
prices, so even with a new deck, the current selling price might be half
what it was six months earlier:-(

With software, if you ask a bunch of software developers how much a piece of
software is worth, I assume they are going to quote you how much time and
effort it would take them and therefore how much they would charge to
reproduce the same. If you wanted to know how much it was worth to the
company, surely the Company accountant would be the one to peruse the
balance sheet and determine increased revenue since the implementation of
the software. Unfortunately, as current events prove, there are a lot of
other things that can effect revenue, so even with new software, revenue may
be on a downward slide compared to six months earlier.

Of course having other metrics which have been historically recorded and
prepared prior to your software, and by which you know you'll be bench
marked against, would be the most logical form of determining software's
(robot's, employee's, facebook's....) value. The old 'we use to have 10 Data
Entry personal manually inputting 1000 records an hour, the new software
requires no personal and inputs 1,100 records an hour.' The company may
still go out of business, but at least you can say to another company, my
$1000 software can cut your employee budget by 10% and increase productivity
by 10%.

If you've got the metrics, you should be able to verify the value.

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