Bike Shedding

Bike shedding is when you need to plan and build an entire building but spend most of your time perfecting the bike shed and realizing you ran out of time to do the most important work. You might laugh, but people like doing the easy stuff first for some reason rather than tackling the biggest need head on.

📰 One of the most historic examples of bike-shedding was the GNU project’s obsession with creating all the commands like ls and ps and leaving the most important component — the kernel — for the very last. This is how Linus Torvalds came to be involved. He just made a kernel and nothing else. The result was GNU-Linux which we now just called “Linux” mostly because it is easier to say, but also because the hardest, most significant part was the kernel — even though the GNU team wrote way more code than that used in the kernel.