Matrix of pain

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In software development, the matrix of pain refers to the array of potential customer configurations for which developers must test their software. A significant amount of resources can be spent ensuring that software will operate on a seemingly endless array of potential end-user environments which include various hardware configurations, operating system types, operating system versions, as well as other forms of system software. A tradeoff involved with this process is that resources spent trying to anticipate and account for all of these combinations are at the expense of new feature development and/or refinement of existing feature functionality.