Insane programming: there's a myth about investment banking software commonly voiced by coders outside the pressure cooker world of trading systems development. It goes something like this: huge amounts of money are at stake, so the software must be super reliable and robust. Very often, the opposite is true. Time to market is the driving factor. Traders want functionality yesterday. If a bank can execute profitable business, it can afford to throw support staff at a flaky system. Bugginess will be tolerated if it means executing business that may have gone elsewhere.
In an earlier entry I mentioned that I don't blog about my day job, since wholesale banks are secretive and paranoid. Most other techies working on Wall St and the City of London keep quiet too. But some are starting to lift the lid. If you're curious about what it's like to code on a trading floor, you should be reading this blog.