Thanks, Jeanne. I know what you're saying, which is why I plan on looking at other meanings and analogies people have attached to the term. I'm willing to bet that there are many people--perhaps even a majority--who immediately think of messy code, poor designs, and any suboptimal technical choice as being "technical debt", just as I had before I started researching this. I think it's useful to have a term for these kinds of deficiencies in a program but I also think it's beneficial to maintain the original metaphor's integrity because we can use it to our advantage, given the right mindset.
The best ideas are the crazy ones. If you have a crazy idea and it works, it's really valuable.—Kent Beck