Many thanks to Hanzík for the Czech translations!

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Case 105

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A young nun approached master Banzen and said:

“When first presented with requirements I created a rough design document, as is our way.

“When the rough design was approved I began a detailed design document, as is our way. In so doing I realized that my rough design was ill-considered, and thus I discarded it.

“When the detailed design was approved I began coding, as is our way. In so doing I realized that my detailed design was ill-considered, and thus I discarded it.

“My question is this:

“Since we must refactor according to need, and since all needs are known only when implementation is underway, can we not simply write code and nothing else? Why must we waste time creating design documents?”

Banzen considered this. Finally he nodded, saying:

“There is no more virtue in the documents than in a handful of leaves: you may safely forgo producing either one. Before master Mugen crossed the Uncompiled Wasteland he made eight fine maps of the route he planned to take. Yet when he arrived at the temple gates he burned them on the spot.”

The nun took her leave in high spirits, but as she reached the threshold Banzen barked: “Nun!”

When the nun turned around, Banzen said:

“Mugen was only able to burn the maps because he had arrived.”