Saturday, February 16, 2013

The tester's syndrome

After being a software tester for seven years, I've developed a condition I call the Tester's syndrome. I'm not sure what leads to this, and how specific it is to testers, but I am sure I didn't have it before I became one.

What happens when you suffer from Tester's syndrome is, that you are continuously finding and mentally reporting bugs on the stuff that is happening around you. Yesterday I reported a few when using the elevator mainly regarding the bad usability of the GUI (my colleague also apparently suffers from this condition as he spotted and vocally reported a security issue in the elevator access control system). In toilets I often have to report a few bugs, regarding bad design leading users to be exposed to germs after washing their hands (I'm also a germaphobic btw). In waiting lines I see performance issues. At home... better not to say anything in case my wife is reading. But you get the point.

This may sound like a terrible disease to have, but there are some positive spins to it. The bug reports ease off the irritation these things may cause to me, because as a tester I understand that there are many reasons why bugs happen, and that the reasons are not to intentionally make my life harder. And as a tester I'm also happy to find problems (look to your heart, you know it's true).

So fellow disordered testers, it's ok to log all these bugs, as it is just a condition caused by the hours put into the craft. But be careful to remember that all bugs noticed are not worth telling forward. As we anyway are professional testers, not professional complainers.

And that should be a huge difference.


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