Everyone needs someone larger than life that they can look up to. There are a lot of important people around but I am kind of fond of Murphy. That guy had a better handle on the underlying mechanics of things than anybody I've ever heard of.
Murphy not only grasped the fundamental nature of things he made it possible for the rest of us to understand them too. Obviously Murphy wasn't counting on making a living as a lawyer. By giving us the self-interpreting laws that he did, he lost his chance to make a bloody fortune. But in return for the loss of money he gained immense admiration from the whole world.
I'd like to think that Murphy would be proud of all the people who have since unselfishly disclosed the secrets of other things as a result of his leadership. Without his inspired discovery of his first law there would have been no reason to look for any of the others. And then I would not have spent all these years in search of just a few that have been overlooked.
So in honor of my idol I hereby give up my sole chance to earn a fortune as a lawyer and make my attempt to join the ranks of Murphy admirers who continue to search for universal truth.
LAW OF TENS
Ten lines of code require ten pages to document.
Ten pages of code require ten weeks to document.
Ten weeks' of code require ten people to document.
Ten peoples' code never gets documented.
And that makes everybody tense.
New programs contain more bugs than old programs.
Bugs in old programs have to be eliminated with new programs.
Therefore bugs will inherit the Earth.
Eliminating all the known bugs in the software will release bugs in the compiler.
COSTING'S UNIVERSAL CONSTANTS
Projects always exceed the amount you didn't think they could cost.
Fudging by a factor of two will only be about half right and then only about half the time. Use of any other fudging factor will be detected by your superiors.
It costs more to estimate without guessing than can possibly saved.
LAW OF INFERNAL EQUALIBRIUM
If the reason for doing something is to make things better, it can't be done without making something else worse.
SECRET OF SNAPPY JUDGEMENT
The most decisive way to accomplish something is to decide not to do it.
WELL ROUNDED ATTITUDES
Reality breeds pessimism.
Pessimism fosters hope.
Hope creates optimism.
Optimism liberates reality.
A bad plan is one that didn't work.
A good plan is one that didn't work badly.
A great plan is one that was never approved.
If it looks too good to be true, it probably is.
If it sounds too good to be true, it definitely is.
The thing you spent the least time on will give you the most trouble later on.
History will not repeat itself until you are wrong.
THEORIES OF WORKING RELATIVITY
The farther you are from the work the easier it is to do.
The only time anyone needs something is when you are in the middle of something else.
PATCH OF LEAST RESISTANCE
It is easier to change the program than it is to fix the user.
HASTE MAKES WASTE
It is easier to put things off than to procrastinate.
As long as you remain undecided you can't make any mistakes.
Procrastinating is harder to do when your are in a hurry.
When you are in a hurry...avoid dumb mistorks.
COMPROMISE'S UPPER LIMIT
The income is more important than the outcome.
There is no such thing as bad luck. What it is... is no luck.
The last thing you want is a disaster. Why have it any earlier?
Misfortune waits for no man.
As long as you worry about it, it won't come as a big surprise.
GUIDELINES FOR STRATEGIC PLANNING
Never trust something that fixes itself.
If it doesn't work now it probably won't work later.
If the secretary doesn't know then neither does the boss.
The guy nearest the exit will know what's going on.