Perusing the other SE network sites, particularly Programmers, I often find vigorous support for various agile software development methodologies, particularly the various values known as Extreme Programming (I'm thinking of unit testing, coding standards, etc. and also SOLID principles, variable naming consistency). Yet none of the quantitative researchers I know employ these methods and design principles anywhere near as rigorously as it would appear some software developers do. In fact, many of these concepts are virtually unheard of outside the IT departments of many major financial institutions.
Would it be worth my while to learn and adapt some of these principles to my work, or is it a waste of time? I would mostly be doing this on my own, since there is little desire on the part of my boss and colleagues to change the way we do things now. Most of my code gets thrown away anyhow, and often the qualitative conclusions I reach are more important than re-usability. That is, I am typically testing some hypothesis, and once I have reached a conclusion, that code is not really needed any more. Occasionally I have to re-write large chunks of code to automate the recalculation of proprietary indicators I have developed, but I usually have no idea what will end up in production until I am nearly done with the research. Besides, there may even be value in reviewing all the code as it is re-written now that I have an end goal in mind.