I have had this sample chapter sitting on my desktop for a couple of weeks now.  Tonight I decided it was time to read it or close it.  Thankfully I chose to read it.

By the definition of this book, “Catastrophe Disentanglement: Getting Software Projects Back on Track”, the project that I am currently on is a catastrophe.  Sure we keep knocking out bugs, but at the same time they keep adding more and more functionality and extensions to the project.  As this chapter suggest I think it is long past time to stop work and come up with a plan of getting to a successful end of the project.

There are a number of reasons that the project got to this point, but at this point the problem has become fixing bugs while introducing new functionality which is causing a never ending spiral.  I would compare this to putting a wet bandage on an open wound.  It isn't going to heal very well.  If it is kept dry and clean things should improve over time.

In this case it means stop further changes until it has been determined how far from the mark we really are.  After that the most pressing bugs must be exterminated.  At that point any new changes should be prioritized and new deadlines set.  This won't save the budget or the time-line, but it can bring back quality and usability that I believe is key.