The value in the name “technical debt” is that it’s easily understood by many and is mostly applicable. Unhedged Call Options, not so much.
This is a very a good point.
I’ve had a fair number of conversations that looked at creating more financal metaphors in software development, but they never got anywhere because we kept running into the wall of insanity that is finances. In a way, they are a great pairing in that they are filled with bizarre lingo and convoluted practices. On the other hand, they don’t match up in that finances seems to be all about ways to get things to break (that is, beating the system) versus software which seems to be all about desperately finding a way to keep things together.
All those conversations have done is solidify my belief that finances is black magic that is not to be trusted.
The other characteristic that the term “technical debt” captures, which this inside-baseball finance industry stuff doesn’t, is the idea that, like interest-bearing debt, neglected code or a messy architecture will only get worse if left unaddressed. There is a cost to inaction.