I got a dreaded call from my team lead around lunch time last Friday. He said the customer had a high priority problem that needed to be solved. So the both of us took a look at what it involved. We figured we could deliver a solution in a couple days. Our manager asked if it could be done in one day.
Now I am used to this type of crazy inquiry. So I reiterated that it would take two of the best people on our team a total of three days. And there was no good way to get from three to one. The manager did not like that answer. He directed us to do some more analysis. And he asked whether we could work throughout the weekend.
In the past I had fallen for that trap. The manager promises we can just work through the weekend, then take some extra time off the next week to compensate. The only problem is that there are more emergencies the next week, and you get into a vicious cycle. So I declined the weekend work. You got to stick to your guns with these workaholics.
There is a lot more to this story. However I thought I would focus on a positive note. My team lead needed me to do a lot of work for this problem. The most difficult task was to generate some test data to simulate all of the necessary test cases. This was some code deep in our application. The code dealt with all kinds of weird test cases. Instead of just hacking around some data, I decided to code a script that would set up the test data. This probably extended the time it took to generate the test data by about 10%. However it gave me at nice boost as I love coding, even when you have to stay late at work to get the job done.
A Little Bit of Crypto - I have been trying to figure out to "collision resistant" some of these standard hash functions are. It is a tough concept to get my head around. I figure...