Metaphor From the Road

You have a great maintenance plan that takes into account the 25-year lifespan of the highway as designed. Each year, you perform maintenance that effectively replaces 4% of the road while doing minor touch-up work on the rest. You are on a different span of the road each year, only coning-off 4 miles of a 100 mile span. You proudly regard your system that keeps as much of the road as possible in as good of shape as possible, this year and every year.

To your users, it looks like the road is continuously under construction and never fully available. The four miles of construction lead to backups that extend further, and they are there every year. Why is this road always breaking down? Can’t they build it right?

: Zubon

6 thoughts on “Metaphor From the Road”

  1. It’s a good metaphor. Problem is while you have created a great maintenance schedule, it doesn’t take into consideration the actual use of the highway, and tends to inconvenience the users. It may be better to analyze the projected traffic on the road to realize that some sections in 25 years will not need maintenance, while other heavily used areas will need more resources thrown at it to minimize disruption while being repaired.

    For MMOs it’s tougher, because they are more like the metaphor. What you described seems to me to be the rollout of planned content. The developers make a good timetable on the release of content they have already made and tested, and release it in orderly chunks.

    I think to minimize disruption due to use, you’d need to balance rolling out content with balancing it in greater measure. The road does get backed up, since each new planned content chunk will demand its own dev time maintaining it. That’s why players bitch that the road is always busted, because unlike a road, once you do each 4%, you need to spend another 2% tweaking the “road” to handle unforeseen issues.

  2. “The maximum speed limit is too low, I want to go faster!”

    “The minimum speed limit is too high, I want to take my time and enjoy the trip!”

    “They need more rest stops!”

    “The road is too straight and boring, just the same stuff over and over!”

    “This hill is too steep! I won’t make it to the top!”

    “The other cars are driving too fast!”

    “It’s too foggy, I can’t see where I am going. I’m taking a different road.”

  3. You forgot the classic “If you don’t fix this $&(*@& road situation by the end of the month I’ll stop driving on your roads”

  4. lol Zube you crack me up… this reminds me strongly of Nevada.. every time I drive across it its like this. One lane with the rest under construction for miles.

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