Is editing older projects more important than making new projects?

Is editing older projects more important than making new projects?

For example, I have a survey webpage that I made a year ago
and wanted to edit it to make it “less bad”.

But I also heard that

you’ll learn more stuff as you’re building more projects.
And if you compare a project that you’ve made in a long time you’ll realize how much you’ve improved -Some dev

What do you think?

I would say both are important. Professional developers edit old code all the time.

1 Like

Hi @MAZ1211 !

I agree that there is nothing wrong with editing older projects.
You could revisit this survey page and update the design.

But it is also important that you don’t remake the same survey page 10 times over.

You should also be working on new projects and learning new skills.
That is how you will grow as a developer.

Hope that helps!

1 Like

so far ive barely looked back in my old projects for editing purpose. Dont get me wrong, im sure it would be a good practice and would be refreshing to see how bad i wrote the code and to handle their issues more graceful, but i find i gain more by facing the new projects, where very often you are given another chance at technologies you utilized in the past, but also intertwine them with current tasks. As a side note, at least for me, those old projects has some historic value, as i can turn back to them and look how i progressed thru the content.
Once i run out of current projects to do, i suppose i would take another shot at certain old ones.

YMMV but for learning purposes, probably no (with caveats).

Why do you want to do this (not rhetorical)? If it was made as a learning exercise, what will you gain from editing the existing one vs. just making a new version? If IRL, then yes you need to keep maintaining/building on the same codebase, there’s no choice, and it will rot if you don’t. For small learning projects, it’s normally just going to be a huge grind – you’re unlikely to learn much from it and it’s often going to be extremely boring rehashing things you’ve already done.

Caveat is if it’s some portfolio project you think important to demonstrate, in which case yes (though tossing out and rewriting is probably a better idea unless it’s just small modifications). Or there are actual people using it, in which case you have to maintain it, it’s not just yours any more.

Also, YMMV but I’ve found the following to be true regardless of skill or job, to quote:

The ceramics teacher announced on opening day that he was dividing the class into two groups. All those on the left side of the studio, he said, would be graded solely on the quantity of work they produced, all those on the right solely on its quality. His procedure was simple: on the final day of class he would bring in his bathroom scales and weigh the work of the “quantity” group: fifty pound of pots rated an “A”, forty pounds a “B”, and so on. Those being graded on “quality”, however, needed to produce only one pot — albeit a perfect one — to get an “A”. Well, came grading time and a curious fact emerged: the works of highest quality were all produced by the group being graded for quantity. It seems that while the “quantity” group was busily churning out piles of work - and learning from their mistakes — the “quality” group had sat theorizing about perfection, and in the end had little more to show for their efforts than grandiose theories and a pile of dead clay.


I think that there can be value in updating some of your older projects, and even more value in taking the new skills you’ve gained to keep building on and improving your favorite projects.

On the other hand, some projects that we build along the way are just learning experiences and we just want to move on.


This topic was automatically closed 182 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.