Inert Detritus The Internet's dust bunnies

13 September 2007 @ 10am

Bug Hunting

The three stages of bug hunting (via ~stevenf)

  1. It can never happen!
  2. Strange, it happens
  3. How can it even have worked before?

more easily understood as: denial, acceptance, and amazement.

Many bugs I’ve encountered and fixed in my young Computer Science days went through these steps. While denial is useful for ego inflationg, I quickly grew past it, because I realized it didn’t contribute anything to a final solution: it only delayed inevitable acceptance. It’s quite hard to deny the existence of a bug when the program crashes or when a tree traversal returns incorrect values.