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Lean programming is methodology focusing on optimizing efficiency and minimizing the waste of software applications during their design and creation. This methodology may be applied throughout an organization and involve all stakeholders in a software application's development and delivery.
Lean programming was a Japanese industry concept adopted by the U.S. during the 1980s. Its main goal is continuous product improvement at all operational levels and stages.
In lean programming software defects are an accepted part of application development and eliminating them is a primary goal. This involves reducing the amount of code associated with error-free products, which in turn reduces inflated inventories and waste. For example, smaller pieces of pre-tested and error-free code are often used to build larger applications to meet customer needs.
If properly implemented, lean programming can deliver a complete product within budget and with greater efficiency, ultimately increasing customer satisfaction.
As with any methodology, the most difficult aspect of lean programming can often be convincing programmers to implement new development methods.