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There is more than one way to simplify code. You could, for example, adopt new abstractions that make things that were previously difficult, easier to implement. Of course this requires learning new things, and it requires pushing yourself a bit to adapt.

Or you could stay simple by not adapting. By using the same tools we’ve always used, you could reduce the amount of mental effort you need to put into a new project. This is simplicity of a sort, too.[1]

The dilemma is salient for librarians. Do we use the old ways, so that more or less anyone in the department can maintain our web stuff, or do we try to stay up to speed with modern tooling, which many librarians will not touch? Both of these approaches have risks. Life will obviously not stand still, but we need to decide if, as a department, we’re going to keep up with the leading edge or the trailing edge of web technologies.

Anyhow, these problems raise important questions. I don’t have the answers. I do have my opinions, but I am very cognizant that not everyone will agree with me.

[1] There are probably other ways to simplify programming, but I’ll leave those aside for now.

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