Developers: A Ray of Sunshine

Developers may be the most blatantly, unashamedly  optimistic group of people I have ever known. In the face of all evidence to the contrary, they believe that this time, software will work, deadlines will be met, solutions will be easy and testing will find no bugs.  It doesn’t matter how quickly something was put together or how shaky the requirements, or how new the system – developers feel completely confident that things will be fine. This never ceases to amaze me. I hate being the rain cloud on their bright day, but at the same time, I do enjoy injecting a little realism.

Code freeze just two days before launch? No problem.

Late requirements? We can squeeze them in!

last minute fixes? It shouldn’t be too hard/ (and my favorite) This will just take a minute.

They deploy their hard work off to staging, crack open a beer, and sit in the sun while testing begins. Even before you start that first test, you know it is too early for that beer. You remember last release, and the one before that. You remember that “quick bug fix” that took two days of testing and reworking to straighten out. You know this time is not different. You know they have deployed code that is broken, and that in a matter of time and tests, you will find the first broken spot- and then the next. You know that no matter how long or how hard you work, when testing is over and the project goes live, there will still be more bugs uncovered days, weeks or months later. You can only hope that if you work really hard, you will catch all the big issues. But that is your job- to remember all the ways things have broken before.

Developers spend their days creating new systems and solving problems. They get instant gratification when they do little fixes and get their unit tests to pass. They thought up their own solution, and so are somewhat blinded to potential issues  by their very involvement. Software testers spend their days slogging through broken programs, early releases, and failed bug fixes. Once something is fixed, we stop using it. We read countless bug reports and user issues and spend our days writing test cases trying to find broken spots. We aren’t involved in that creative burst of fixing something or designing something. Our creativity comes from all the ways we find to break it.

So when you file that first bug of the testing cycle, remember… their optimism will come in handy when it is time to fix all the issues you find. Besides, we are optimistic in our own way. We fully believe that their are bugs out there to find, and each day, we are proved blissfully right. Each issue we file a little victory, because that is one less issue for there to be in production, which helps the developers, QA and project managers to feel more optimistic about the release as a whole.


One response to this post.

  1. We tester just do what u called “injecting a little realism”. A very enjoyable post!


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