What does a bug do to you?

mbaas2 profile image Michael Baas ・2 min read

Last week I started my weekly report to management with the words "a frustratingly buggy week". And only afterwards I did fully realize that I might be on a journey to find a new approach of thinking about bugs.

(I'm sorry if I seem to jump between various issues here - this is not a finished academic research, but rather a thought process in the making. So I can only show various building blocks and hope that we can we have a discussion which might lead to some learnings...)

I have some early childhood memories about a software-bug: my grandma was working as accountant in a large tea-company that implemented their own accounting software (1970'ish). A few days before going live they discovered severe bugs...and ultimately the lead-dev commmited suicide!

In my job in a software-company I have 2 (or more) roles: I develop software for end-users as well as internal use - and I'm also getting involved in the QA of our flagship-product. So I can commit bugs and am affected by them! ;)

My thinking was that a bug is an offensive thing that interrupts productive work and that needs to be fixed quickly so that I does not affect my "rate of output". The fact that I perceive them so harshly may have to do with personal experience as a long-time independent developer (who needed to finish projects to make a living).

But there is another way to see bugs: "Some of us find debugging intellectually stimulating and are perversely attracted to it. "(Dijkstra or Hoare or Wirth?)

Where do you find yourself on that scale? And what about "corporate culture" dealing with bugs?

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Michael Baas


APL-Developer and loving it :)


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