Facilitating the spread of knowledge and innovation in professional software development



Choose your language

InfoQ Homepage News The Creeping Featuritis Chart

The Creeping Featuritis Chart

DefineThat calls Creeping Featuritis a "lurking general tendency in designers' minds," and "a disease ... manifested in software or hardware".  Wikipedia remarks on "the temptation to keep adding new features, without a specific goal."

Although often associated with marketing, sales, or program management roles, developers are not immune - and when it infests code, it's an insidious sort of product rot, reducing useful software into heaps of expensive widgets and aggravating help features. 

The Agile focus on customer-valued features is supposed to prevent this... "agile enables you to build the right software at the right time".  But teams sometimes forget: they must consistently practice customer prioritization to be innoculated.

On Peter Abilla's blog, a chart by Kathy Sierra, The Featuritis Curve, captures what this looks like from the Customer's point of view. The author reminds us to "focus on the customer and abandon the competitor-focused strategy all-together."  Clearly a visual thinker, he goes on to discuss the Pareto Principle (a.k.a the 80/20 rule), a Prioritization Matrix and the Agile Manifesto.

Abilla, a former employee also mentions the Amazon core value of "customer obsession".
We need your feedback

How might we improve InfoQ for you

Thank you for being an InfoQ reader.

Each year, we seek feedback from our readers to help us improve InfoQ. Would you mind spending 2 minutes to share your feedback in our short survey? Your feedback will directly help us continually evolve how we support you.

Take the Survey

Rate this Article


Hello stranger!

You need to Register an InfoQ account or or login to post comments. But there's so much more behind being registered.

Get the most out of the InfoQ experience.

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p

Community comments

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p


Is your profile up-to-date? Please take a moment to review and update.

Note: If updating/changing your email, a validation request will be sent

Company name:
Company role:
Company size:
You will be sent an email to validate the new email address. This pop-up will close itself in a few moments.