A few weeks ago Eli Robillard had an interesting posting:
The two most frequently asked questions in I.T.:
1) How long will it take?
2) How much will it cost?
Jim McCarthy has it right by saying in essence, "anyone who says they knows in advance how long a software project will take is lying."
Bingo! The truth is that most software estimates are not made by the developers (or their managers) - this would be 'rational estimation'. But estimates are usually put out by the sales & marketing folks and/or their accompanying management - aka 'political estimation'. Guess which is put on a project plan for deliverables?
I have a new blog category - 'Software Engineering', something I formally studied but the postings will usually be about tales from the trenches...