Pacific Electric Railway cars awaiting destruction on Terminal Island, California in 1956. (image credit: UCLA Library Digital Collections)

Shooting Craps with the Grandkids’ Cash

Some thoughts on a failed Olympic bid and what it tells us about the shocking randomness of how we build our cities.

Although it has been many years since I last wrote computer code ‘to save my life’ I still vividly remember the five basic phases of the Cost of Change Curve associated with software development projects. While the fine details are now dim and distant the basic idea is this: the cost of making a given change rises exponentially as we work our way from the first phase, Requirements, through the intermediate Analysis, Coding and Testing phases and then finally to the Production phase. Plot the costs on a graph and the main characteristic is the skyward-to-infinity spike as we get to the latter phases of the project.

Not There Yet.