A while back, I read an article on a Joel On Software forum entitled Development Principles. I thought at the time that it made a great deal of sense to me - it seemed to strike a good balance between general and pragmatic. The responses to the article were pretty vigorous, and tended to come down pretty hard on it, I thought. I'll chalk this up to the audience, which has a strong "don't fence me in" contingency. In any event, if you've got a couple minutes, give it a read -- it's worth the time.