The fundamental problem with software maintenance is that fixing a defect has a substantial (20-50 percent) chance of introducing another. So the whole process is two steps forward and one step back. Why aren't defects fixed more cleanly? First, even a subtle defect shows itself as a local failure of some kind. In fact it often has system-wide ramifications, usually nonobvious. Any attempt to fix it with minimum effort will repair the local and obvious, but unless the structure is pure or the documentation very fine, the far-reaching effects of the repair will be overlooked. Second, the repairer is usually not the man who wrote the code, and often he is a junior programmer or trainee.

The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering, Anniversary Edition (2nd Edition) by Frederick P. Brooks

ISBN: 0201835959 This book is available from Amazon