Firstly, I had to google if this International Programmers Day is honestly a thing and interestingly enough, I can now add a new byte of information to my development knowledge base.
To quote Wikipedia:
“The Day of the Programmer is an international professional day that is celebrated on the 256th (hexadecimal 100th, or the 28th) day of each year (September 13 during common years and on September 12 in leap years). It is officially recognized in Russia.
The number 256 (28) was chosen because it is the number of distinct values that can be represented with a byte, a value well known to programmers. 256 is also the highest power of two that is less than 365, the number of days in a common year.”
As a tester myself, I feel slightly forgotten that there is a day where programmers are observed and celebrated for the positive changes that they make to improve our everyday lives when the tester is also a crucial part to that change. I’m not saying we are better than programmers; in contrary without a programmer, I don’t have a job but together we make a great team to deliver on these positives changes to improve life. I have a note taped to my screen that reads “I make Developers cry” and some days depending on the item being worked on that is the absolute truth and other days they make me cry. What is the relevance of mentioning this note?
I recently had to test a new application designer program aimed at developers in which to create new programs all from within SYSPRO. Let me just state that being a developer and being a tester is very similar and not in several ways. It has been a long time since I last created programs, university days to be exact and yes let’s just keep it at several years ago. Having a developer mindset or at least some insight into how they see and use applications is quite a bit different to how testers approach it. Once again there are two sides to everything, but I can tell you that once again I’ve gotten a new appreciation for programmers and how their minds work. Which also means that sometimes, and I do not say this is all the time, I do feel sorry for the programmers’ being at the mercy of their testers.
The program was given to a controlled group of programmers to use and several great/vital errors were found and corrected, none of which would have been uncovered by me as a tester. I went about the project as a tester and some of the things I reported I’m sure made my developer cry. Firstly, because why would you do that, it isn’t designed for this and thanks to this program a large portion of coding has been eliminated. I started to feel like quite the keyboard warrior that can also create programs now or at least the visual components of programs (meaning that the back end that does all the work still needs to be coded). This is a classic example of having insufficient or outdated where having old/outdated or just a little bit of information can be dangerous. I will however still strongly defend my test findings because if I can do this, then so can a customer or third-party developer. It is all for the better of the program. The concept and hard work to bring this program to fruition is credited to a programmer. In nearly every major software business and with ERP we require programmers to maintain our systems and infrastructure. An ERP programmer reviews, analyzes, and modifies the programming systems including encoding, testing, and debugging to support an organization’s ERP applications.
So, with this newfound appreciation for the programmers out there, I salute you and wish you a happy programmers’ day. May I suggest that as a celebration of testers the habit of programmers to treat bugs as undocumented features be suspended and that way programmers can have a bug-free day…now on your marks, get set and code!