Wikipedia talk:Chesterton's fence

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Justification for A-B Testing in Software Development[edit]

Chesterton's Fence is a logic problem that can be used to justify the need for A-B Testing in software development. There exists a common problem in software development where the purpose of a block of legacy code is not understood. Removal of the block of legacy code is considered dangerous for undefined reasons beyond the justification that "it could break something" but the existence of the legacy block of code has a negative impact associated with it. If there is no further information to be extracted about the legacy block of code, then the prudent solution is to A-B test its removal and in the process, produce data about its impact so that an educated decision can be made. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Kzgrey (talkcontribs) 21:18, 3 April 2017 (UTC)


I've never seen an article on a topic of interest turned into a sermon for Wikipedia editors.

First section is really good, and the second section is a really good sermon! (Seems I'm not logged in. Will fix that if need be.) (talk) 00:30, 16 June 2015 (UTC)

It's not an article ... it's a project-space essay. Of course it's going to be a sermon. Daniel Case (talk) 21:34, 21 November 2015 (UTC)

Make this a normal article[edit]

This ought to be NPOV-ified and then made into an article in it's own right. Chesterton's Fence doesn't just apply to political reform but also to engineering and many other disciplines. --BenMcLean (talk) 14:49, 6 August 2015 (UTC)

It can be both. Feel free to start an article if you've got sources. Daniel Case (talk) 21:33, 21 November 2015 (UTC)
G. K. Chesterton#Chesterton's fenceGeorge Makepeace (talk) 02:55, 11 September 2018 (UTC)
I've referenced it a few times in software development contexts. Always surprised to rediscover it isn't already a standalone article Inopinatus (talk) 18:31, 14 September 2019 (UTC)

The section directed at wikipedia editors[edit]

Not sure what the purpose of this is.

Suggest deletion? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:19, 26 August 2016 (UTC)

It grew out of a couple of XfDs where people didn't research what they were nominating for deletion, causing a great deal of hurt from those who understood its purpose when they did.

My goal has been to extend this into a longer, clearer essay at some point. Daniel Case (talk) 20:27, 8 September 2016 (UTC)

"History is full of examples..."[edit]

From the article:

History is full of examples of negative outcomes that resulted from the failure to understand this admonition. Pandora opened a box containing all the world's evils. Adam and Eve ate from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, despite God's admonition not to, and the whole world was plunged into original sin.

It's quite off-putting because these are not examples from history, but from mythology or religion. They should be deleted or the paragraph rephrased. Cstanford.math (talk) 08:31, 10 August 2017 (UTC)


This seems a bit ironic. Killiondude (talk) 18:40, 7 August 2020 (UTC)

It's almost poetic. bibliomaniac15 23:50, 7 August 2020 (UTC)


Google shows this essay as its top search result for the term, which seems to be causing quite a bit of confusion. I've added a hatnote and marked the page with the __NOINDEX__ magic word to hopefully avoid the problem. --Paul_012 (talk) 00:13, 22 September 2020 (UTC)

Paul 012, interesting hatnote. I wonder if {{Essay}} should be changed in some way so that all Wikipedia essays are more clearly marked as not part of the encyclopedia. {{u|Sdkb}}talk 00:19, 22 September 2020 (UTC)
I was also thinking about this, but did the hatnote first to address the immediate issue. I'll raise it at the template talk page. --Paul_012 (talk) 02:02, 22 September 2020 (UTC)