Minimal configuration, just in case?

There’s this idea of always using a minimal software configuration so that I can fire up any computer and be productive immediately.” I’m skeptical.

Does that actually happen to people? I’ve never had to jump on a strange machine and be productive immediately. Seems like another case of optimizing for the unlikely.

I always wear a seatbelt, just in case there’s an accident. This is totally worth the tradeoffs, since the inconvenience is minor and the consequences of not doing it are life-threatening.

Keeping my software mostly at its default configuration means that 99% of the time I’m operating less efficiently than I could be, just in case something highly unlikely happens, and that 1% is almost certainly inconsequential.

I don’t want to make that trade.