Let’s say you start an e-commerce site.
This influences Picasso as they work together and Picasso starts switching things up and begins adding cubism files to the codebase. The codebase is so new that Picasso and Dali can continue adding new files at any time with no harm, because there is no maintenance when it’s just two engineers adding new functionality. No one is stepping on each other’s toes. There’s enough paint for everyone.
Then you hire Monet and he comes in and leaves his impression on everything.
Now you have a blue period shopping cart, impressionist image lazy loading, surrealist photo slide show, and cubism style event tracking in
Let’s jump to the future 4 years later. Lots of major functionality has already been built. Picasso has left the company to pursue a company built on a guernica style. Your business focus has shifted a bit and you need someone to extend Picasso’s blue period shopping cart to support collaborative shopping (lots of people sharing the same cart in realtime).
So Banksy goes in and spray paints over your Picasso shopping cart and makes it collaborative and you have a big successful relaunch.
A month later a bug report comes in about removing items from the shopping cart. Banksy is busy on another project, so you get Monet to go in and fix it.
Monet doesn’t know how to use spray paint cans. So his attempts to fix it are sloppy. He breaks the build. He switches back to the brush and just paints over it, but it took a lot longer than it should have because of the time to understand and adopt an unfamiliar style.
When you have over 80 engineers contributing to one codebase, you quickly learn your usual ways of doing things don’t work. So we try to turn everyone into Picasso. No matter where you jump in to the codebase, all the files are familiar and look like they were painted by you.
The style that works best for our team is our Picasso style since that’s how it all started.
We open sourced our style guide so other teams could fork it and turn it into a Monet style guide or a Banksy style guide. Which is lots of fun to watch.
It’s the only way the world will enjoy the next Picasso.