Signs of Trouble

I came home from work Thursday afternoon. It had been a tough week. So I took a nap. When I woke up later Thursday night, I had voice mail messages from work. They were requests for help with the software being delivered next Monday. I was working on a different task. But people wanted me to come in at the last minute to assist with this other effort. One request came from an executive high up in the company. So of course my answer would be yes.

My charter was to come in and fix some bugs detected by the customer. That sounded reasonable. I am an expert at speedy bug resolution. The first sign of doom was that my team leader said he did not know what bugs I should fix. He said he did not have the time to go through the massive list of defects and assign them to people. So my first task was to identify some reported defects that I could correct.

I spent some time reviewing all the open defects against our system. There were quite a few of them. I then let my team lead know which ones I could work. He agreed and I got down to business. Then there was another developer who “needed help”. I agreed to look at their problems. It was plain and clear. Their SQL was defective. I guess they did not understand what they were trying to query. I got their query fixed soon enough.

Then the next big bomb was dropped. They were trying to code some new functionality. This was being done on the Friday before a Monday delivery. Oh oh. My team lead called me up and asked me what I thought about the design. I told him it was one way to do the task, but it would break a number of other functionality in the application. I pitched a different design. Then I got assigned the task of running forward with the design. Oh oh again.

Of course there is a lot more drama associated with this diversion on this troubled task. I will save that for a future post. One thing to look forward to are developers too tired to build their software. Another is the never ending “we need another hour to make some more changes”. Stay tuned.