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A term which refers to software that has gotten far bigger and bulkier than it needs to be; frequently as the result of so-called "gang bang coding" in which legions of coders work over the same application simultaneously and for extended periods of time. This leads to cruft such as gigantic libraries of which only a tiny fraction of the functions are actually used, but nobody's sure what is needed so the whole thing gets kept; or odd bugs that somebody wrote code to depend on rather than chasing them down and fixing them, so that if one thing gets fixed three more are likely to be broken in consequence.

Microsoft gets a lot of (richly deserved) scorn for bloated code, but bloat is by no means unheard of outside the hallowed halls of Redmond: *nix's own ubiquitous sendmail is as blecherous, buggy, and hag-ridden as almost anything Microsoft has out there.

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