What is it, whats the risk? Who owes who?
Technical debt is the cost of additional workload caused by choosing an easy solution now, instead of using a better approach that would take longer to deliver. Believe it or not in big business the cogs around software delivery teams can get very bogged down with processes. It doesn’t matter if its Agile or Waterfall. In huge complex environments such as in the Telecommunications industry it can become very difficult to deliver fast software solutions.
Imagine the firewall rules, all the security teams, and the auditing teams that have to get involved just to deliver a new piece of software. From experience I can confirm that this is a very complex process. When technology moves so fast and internal process can be so slow Technical debt builds up. Its human nature to cut corners just to move onto the next big Project.
All we end up owning is Technical Debt
We always want the newest and shiniest toy in the shop. No body cares about those old toys anymore. Yet they are still here and they all need some tender loving care to keep performing.
So we have, older less secure versions of Operating systems and they are running on older hardware with end of life firmware. The sensible thing is to just upgrade to the latest release. This is a relatively cheap thing to do. But the software companies like Amdoc and IBM they charge 20 times the amount to upgrade the software running on these systems to newer versions of the OS. They even do this between minor releases, such as from CentOS 7.8 to CentOS 7.9.
So the result is no one wants to invest into this as its too expensive and toxic. How can we have nice shiny things if we are spending all the budgets maintaining old environments. Hardware and software goes end of life and into obscurity. All our data is still there, running, waiting.
A hackers paradise.