Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

October, November the Worst Months For Writing Buggy Code

Soulskill posted about 2 years ago | from the blame-the-halloween-candy-coma dept.

Bug 136

chicksdaddy writes "Data from application testing firm Veracode suggests that the quality of application code submitted for auditing is pretty much constant throughout the year — except for the months of October and November, when the average density of vulnerabilities in the code jumps considerably. But why? Is it the pressure of deadlines? The stress of developers' lives (kids back to school, etc.)?"

cancel ×

136 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

A little late? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440450)

Why do they warn us in December?

Re:A little late? (5, Funny)

M. Baranczak (726671) | about 2 years ago | (#38440540)

So you have ten months to prepare.

I bet if we all work hard, we can produce even more bugs next October.

Re:A little late? (4, Insightful)

Laz10 (708792) | about 2 years ago | (#38441038)

Looking back at my invoices, I can see that I usually work more hours those two months than any other months of the year.
I also get depressed from lack of sunlight in the dark Scandinavian autumn days.

On the other hand a total of one (and that was some trivial layout) bug was reported on the code I coded and shipped in that period this year.

Maybe the bugs are only found later?
That also suggests that the bugs found in October and November was introduced by the interns during the summer vacation?

Re:A little late? (1)

ILongForDarkness (1134931) | about 2 years ago | (#38441460)

Or the group is tackling more complex things in those months. Tester is working like crazy so he doesn't have to work late near Christmas etc. Maybe you release in the new year and everyone is focused on finding and fixing bugs rather than writing new code. A sample of one company (how many products?) probably isn't sufficient. That said I've spent the last couple weeks tracking down one nasty bug, but its December ...

Re:A little late? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38441528)

You know which two months precede December?

wow first post (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440466)

just saying

Re:wow first post (1, Funny)

multiben (1916126) | about 2 years ago | (#38440626)

Lol at you Mr. Second.

what? (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#38440472)

Worst month for writing buggy code? What's worse about writing buggy code in those months versus writing buggy code in any other month?

Re:what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440640)

The frequency of it occurring.

Re:what? (2)

ackthpt (218170) | about 2 years ago | (#38440648)

Worst month for writing buggy code? What's worse about writing buggy code in those months versus writing buggy code in any other month?

It's a good question. Distraction of holidays, travel, stress, Greg Bell and his festival of tired and oft-repeated Christmas Specials on Sirius/XM,
  with possibly a little monetary discomfort as coders discover there's no bonus (for them like the other of the 99%), possibly also being dragged from your work, constantly for work parties so you lose track of those little things you needed to address before rolling out the final code.

I generally find Winter (northern hemisphere) is great for coding, while heat and humidity of Summer are a real drag.

Re:what? (0)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#38440794)

*facepalm* Get your sarcasm detector fixed.

Re:what? (1)

SimplyGeek (1969734) | about 2 years ago | (#38441718)

"little monetary discomfort as coders discover there's no bonus (for them like the other of the 99%)"

I'm part of the "99%" and I get a healthy bonus. It all depends on who you work for.

Re:what? (1)

Duhavid (677874) | about 2 years ago | (#38441748)

So, we should all come work for who you work for? :-)

Re:what? (1)

chuckinator (2409512) | about 2 years ago | (#38440784)

Q3 financials are in, so the corps put on extra pressure in the last month to close out the fiscal year on a high note.

Re:what? (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 2 years ago | (#38441072)

Isn't the financial YE in June?

Re:what? (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | about 2 years ago | (#38441154)

Many companies in the US start the fiscal year in October matching the fiscal year of the US govement. The United States government fiscal year for 2012 ("FY 2012" or "FY12") is as follows:

1st Quarter: October 1, 2011 - December 31, 2011

2nd Quarter: January 1, 2012 - March 31, 2012

3rd Quarter: April 1, 2012 - June 30, 2012

4th Quarter: July 1, 2012 - September 30, 2012

Whoa whoa whoa (4, Funny)

DJ Jones (997846) | about 2 years ago | (#38440478)

You guys have kids?

Re:Whoa whoa whoa (1, Troll)

ackthpt (218170) | about 2 years ago | (#38440570)

You guys have kids?

Revoke their geek cred, unless they're schooling their kids in the finer points of science and technology.

Re:Whoa whoa whoa (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38441030)

Seriously? You haven't forked off a child and dealt with real process management issues or handled dirty log files until you've installed mini_me 0.2. And don't even get me started on working out the upgrade path to teenager 0.8. I'll guess you haven't even upgraded your personal operating system to the point where it's compatible with wife 1.0, heck you probably haven't even found a place to download girlfriend 0.3 let alone figured out the sweet_love module. Revoke my geek cred? Yeah right.

Re:Whoa whoa whoa (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38442244)

you probably haven't even found a place to download girlfriend 0.3 let alone figured out the sweet_love module.

Gives a whole new meaning to modprobe...

Like I said before in my Firefox 9 post. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440480)

I'm waiting to upgrade because Firefox 9 might end up being a lump of coal in the Christmas stocking.

Re:Like I said before in my Firefox 9 post. (0)

6Yankee (597075) | about 2 years ago | (#38440518)

That's not coal... That's a Guinness turd!

Is there ever a good month? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440482)

Okay like so many other Slashdot readers, I only read the headline...so what month is a GOOD month in which to write buggy code?

Re:Is there ever a good month? (4, Funny)

anonymov (1768712) | about 2 years ago | (#38440944)

Weeks 0-4 of PLACEHOLDER STRING - DO NOT USE are best for writing buggy code.

Drunk n High (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440486)

People drink and get high more during this time of year. Perhaps that has a direct correlation with buggy code?

Re:Drunk n High (1)

Aighearach (97333) | about 2 years ago | (#38441110)

I would have expected that to be Nov + Dec not Oct + Nov

Laziness (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440488)

Mostly because we can't be arsed to write unit tests at this time of the year, I reckon.

Useless information - currently (5, Interesting)

willaien (2494962) | about 2 years ago | (#38440494)

Are there other jobs that have their job performance drop considerably during these two months?

If not, what can be used to explain this anomaly? Bogus study? Something unique to programmers?

Is it consistent throughout IT? Are there more reliability issues that can be traced to those months?

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about 2 years ago | (#38440512)

alcohol?

Re:Useless information - currently (2)

janeuner (815461) | about 2 years ago | (#38440552)

Oktoberfest?

Re:Useless information - currently (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38441010)

Real programmers get confused.

Remember, OCT31 = DEC25

Re:Useless information - currently (1, Funny)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about 2 years ago | (#38441092)

You would code at Oktoberfest? :)

Re:Useless information - currently (2)

Moryath (553296) | about 2 years ago | (#38440560)

Maybe it's the rush of deadlines to get product out for the holidays?

For instance, Bethesda. Skyrim comes out, they obviously should have taken a couple more months to bug-test given everything that's being found in the game constantly breaking - but they wanted it out early November so they could get the holiday sales.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

medv4380 (1604309) | about 2 years ago | (#38440618)

So you're blaming the VGA awards? They only stuck to 11.11.11 to make it in time for a 2011 game of the year award, and someone there is crazy about numerology.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

Moryath (553296) | about 2 years ago | (#38440732)

Not the VGA awards - just the holiday shopping cycle in general. Companies are desperate to make their product the "hot christmas gift title", because it increases sales - shipping a buggy product is no big deal to them in the modern "ship now, patch later" ecosystem of Xbox Live, PC, and PS3. Wii isn't much better, sure there's no "ship now patch later", there's just "ship now and if there's a game breaking bug, too fucking bad" like we saw with Metroid: Other M.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#38440752)

Skyrim comes out, they obviously should have taken a couple more months to bug-test given everything that's being found in the game constantly breaking

Whats broke? My only problem is the sound is correct, but the volume level is at least 30 db lower than every other game / music player on the machine. At first I thought it was just quiet, like those people that whined all the time about Doom 3 being dark, well, yeah, its supposed to be dark. Maybe skyrim is just in its quiet place. Yet I hear (pun) some people claim the sound is fine and perfectly normal, which is confusing to me. Also I hear all this stuff about just configure my sound for surround sound etc, but I don't have that kind of hardware, just plain ole stereo, so...

Other than that all I've heard is typical overheating 3d video card drama... "I've overclocked and over voltaged my video card, cpu, and memory, and intentionally undersped the cooling fans so they're quiet, and now the pc crashes all the time, so it must be skyrim's fault, yeah thats it".

So other than the sound sucks, and people with broken computers still have broken computers, I've not heard any problems.

I only have "a dozen or two" hours in, maybe it all goes to heck and blows up around level 30, I donno yet.

I actually paid for it, and everythings up to date according to steam. Maybe some of the "free" torrent versions suck? I donno.

Re:Useless information - currently (2)

Moryath (553296) | about 2 years ago | (#38440834)

Whats broke?

Obviously you haven't been to the Bethesda forums lately.

Seems like half the quests have quest-breaking bugs in them, the quest-givers are randomly killed off by rampaging dragons in the middle of missions or are killed by "other" quests that pop enemies up near quest givers (one of them comes to mind during the mage's guild story arc in nearby Winterhold). There are a whole host of quests that get un-droppable items "stuck" in inventory permanently, using up precious carrying capacity.

And then there are the plethora of graphical and major AI glitches that have plagued the Xbox360 and PS3 ports - Dragons flying backwards, getting stuck in mountains, causing bugs all over. Or, required-pickup quest items that get knocked around during boss fights by "explosions" (spells, dead summons, the breath weapon, etc) and fall through the game's geometry, thus breaking the quests in that way.

Sure, on the PC you can just "cheat" your way in using console commands to fix it. But you have no luck on the consoles that way, for console players the game is just fucking buggy as hell and broken.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#38441008)

Hmm I haven't run into any of that. I think I know the part you reference in the mage quests, where the "things" infest the village and you and some of the mages (faralda and friends) help the townies by wiping out the "things". I remember thinking this is all very nice, but if I F around instead of wasting the "things" and as a result faralda or whatever her name is gets killed off, then I'm going to have no one to train me on destruction spells, so I got it in gear before anyone got hurt, and all ended well. I suppose that makes it a "real" role playing game?

As for the console ports, console guys just seem to be gluttons for punishment, they'll be OK, they're used to the abuse, etc.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

Moryath (553296) | about 2 years ago | (#38441232)

Hmm I haven't run into any of that.

Lucky you.

I think I know the part you reference in the mage quests, where the "things" infest the village and you and some of the mages (faralda and friends) help the townies by wiping out the "things". I remember thinking this is all very nice, but if I F around instead of wasting the "things" and as a result faralda or whatever her name is gets killed off, then I'm going to have no one to train me on destruction spells, so I got it in gear before anyone got hurt, and all ended well.

I fought a bunch of them, had them zooming around everywhere. Finally killed them all, went about my business. Come back to town and I find three bodies lying in the street on the far end of town from the mage's college, apparently one of the little buggers ran all the way across town (way out of visual range) and killed him and two guards.

And damnit if I wasn't two hours later into gameplay, and didn't have a savegame that far back.

At least I know when to just reload - when you fast travel to a main city, and some fucking dragon swings by and starts strafing, burning half the townsfolk to death, just forget it and reload. Apparently these people are too fucking stupid to TAKE COVER when there's a dive-bombing raid by a 2000-pound flame breathing reptile...

The silly part is allowing quest givers or quest targets to constantly get killed by this crap. Seriously, one of the times I had that dragon actually nuke the quest-meeting target for part of the Stormcloak main-story quest: I'd call that fucking game-breaking right there.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

Dhalka226 (559740) | about 2 years ago | (#38441230)

I just ran into a bug during the Greybeards quest line. I don't want to ruin it if you haven't gotten there yet because I think it's actually a cool story, but I'm basically supposed to travel back in time and observe something (in cinematic form), then I get popped back to the present for a fight and the rest of the story.

Long story short, after six or seven resets I could never get the cinematic to happen. It would animate the time travel, but then I would just sit there. None of the things I was supposed to be seeing or hearing were happening, menus were locked out (for example I could get to the system menu but I couldn't navigate to the quest menu--not that I really wanted to but I was hitting keys at this point), character menu, etc were all locked. I was just stuck there.

I also crash randomly. It happens, eh, once every three or four hours of play I would imagine. I suppose it might be an addon issue but the only one I have installed is one to make children killable (little bastards better talk nice!) and I doubt that would be the culprit.

The menus are also troublesome on the PC. It's pretty clear they were built for a console and they don't always navigate properly. I end up with situations where my mouse is over one entry but the active entry is still several entries above it, so when I click I get the wrong dialogue option.

It is a very, very good game overall -- but I can't pretend it isn't buggy.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 2 years ago | (#38441408)

Many quest are broke. And no a little broke. Saved in the middle of a quest? well 'now you can't finish' kind of bugs.
Other bugs I have had to find some pretty ridiculous work rounds.

You derisive remark about torrent was childish.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

toutankh (1544253) | more than 2 years ago | (#38442386)

Or: Skyrim comes out, coders play Skyrim too much, don't get much sleep, write buggy code.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

oracleguy01 (1381327) | more than 2 years ago | (#38442500)

The controls on the PC in the menus were more sluggish until a few updates ago and they adjusted some of the key bindings to be more in line with typical PC games in terms of navigating the menus. I've also ran into the bug where you can't exit a conversation with someone by pressing tab and have to click on the icon of the tab key in the bottom right of the screen to exit the conversation.

This is one area where Steam is certainly nice since it automatically updates; I just happen to notice the version number keeping going up in the menu and some bugs getting fixed.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about 2 years ago | (#38440832)

No offense to BeTheSoda, but they had 7 years.

A. Great game
B. Ported from console moderately buggy, buggier for some than others it seems.

I wouldn't blame the holidays, corporate politics = #1 reason for bugs.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 2 years ago | (#38441446)

If Holidays where the reasons for bugs and Bethesda, then Bethesda would have to have Christmas everyday.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

willaien (2494962) | about 2 years ago | (#38440880)

Well, that's only for commercial software that will see a holiday release.

This article referred to security vulnerabilities... though, it's unknown if it's commercial software, in-house software, etc. that would have such deadlines.

The article's take on it was increased stress due to school starting back, etc. Which would affect more than just IT/Development.

Re:Useless information - currently (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440984)

I work for a large utility company. We see a significant increase in injuries and accidents during these months as well. I don't have the numbers and graphs with me, but it's been notably consistent over the past 8 years.

It's reporting season (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | about 2 years ago | (#38442230)

HTH.

Re:Useless information - currently (1)

plopez (54068) | more than 2 years ago | (#38443102)

SAD?

There's a mistake there (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440502)

You used the term "Developers' lives" which is interchangeable with "hens' teeth"

Management and deadlines (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440508)

In my experience, management never expects productivity to dip no matter what resource or life concerns are going on.

Most people will have a week or two of time off scheduled around the holidays, and those who don't will be shouldering extra workload for those who do. But to management, 6 weeks = 6 weeks.

The uptick in defects never, ever leads to deadlines moving out to ensure quality either. It's just "work more until it's done".

The September that never ended? (0)

dtmos (447842) | about 2 years ago | (#38440538)

People are hired in June, after graduating, and after company introductions their first code is completed in September?

Re:The September that never ended? (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | about 2 years ago | (#38441222)

Then there would be two bumps. One for Fall graduates and one for Spring graduates.

Sooo (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 2 years ago | (#38440564)

This means programmers are aware of lack of sun? Or is it the compounding effects of eating too much of that retched chocolate and other things found around the office during holidays? I know my stomach is doing somersaults right now and a package filled with more treats is winging its way to my from my family.

Deck us all with Boston Charlie .. Walla Walla was and Kalamazoo.

Re:Sooo (1)

theshowmecanuck (703852) | about 2 years ago | (#38441140)

I think this is likely a good part of the reason. In the northern hemisphere where most of the programmers are (since that is where most people live), the days are getting noticeably shorter and colder. A lot of people suffer to some degree by seasonal affected disorder making them more lethargic than normal. Then combine that in some businesses where they are trying to get code related to consumer goods out for black Friday and Christmas season in general. Sleepy overworked programmers, sleepy overworked testers...

Don't get me started on this one ... (5, Funny)

Grindalf (1089511) | about 2 years ago | (#38440568)

I've studied this stuff, it's down to STUPID programmers. Hire people that can type properly. This was everybody wins ...

Re:Don't get me started on this one ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440756)

Mod parent funny; unless you happen to be butthurt and insecure, then mod parent troll.

Re:Don't get me started on this one ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38441172)

I've studied this stuff, it's down to STUPID programmers. Hire people that can type properly. This was everybody wins ...

you were saying?

Re:Don't get me started on this one ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38441998)

"This was everybody wins".. people not typing properly.. and he didn't.. when complaining about it.. irony.. funny..

In one word.. (1)

3seas (184403) | about 2 years ago | (#38440576)

TAXES

Try Again (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | about 2 years ago | (#38441246)

Taxes are due in April.

Re:Try Again (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38441400)

Nah, you file an extension so that it can be filed six months later - Oct 15. You do have to pay up front the estimated tax in Apirl.

The pedant in me shouts (3, Funny)

slowLearner (2498468) | about 2 years ago | (#38440600)

don't you mean "Oct, Nov. best months for writing buggy code"? I would think it would be the "Oct, Nov. worst months for writing non-buggy code".

Re:The pedant in me shouts (1)

Old97 (1341297) | about 2 years ago | (#38440788)

I was gonna say. I find that my bug productivity - buggery, you might call it - goes way up in these months. They are great months for writing buggy code.

Re:The pedant in me shouts (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38441406)

No, they're the worst months for writing buggy code because according to TFA, bugs written in those months get discovered in auditing. Who wants that?

Budgets, schedules (5, Informative)

br00tus (528477) | about 2 years ago | (#38440614)

Most businesses I've seen, a list of things to do is drawn up in the beginning of the year and set as a goal. Achieving those goals goes into consideration for how one did in a year, bonus, next year's budget etc. The list is usually unrealistic due to pressure from above (or other executives whose title may be the same level as the CTO/CIO, but who are for all intents and purposes, at a higher level due to being so-called "profit centers"). The code base being built on is usually old and broken, the equipment it runs on not the best, the team so-so with a few bright people, and a lot of dumb managers. Things not counted in the schedule are long-time experienced employees getting fed up and leaving, equipment breakdowns, bugs and emergencies that have to be dealt with, or business units who change what they want all year long from the original specification. Plus other things - a third party product is bought, and is very difficult to integrate in the existing system, with more time than initially planned for. By October not many things on the year-end checklist are done and the CTO starts having meetings and banging on the table that he needs checks on the lists to show the CEO what his team has done this year. So people stop writing good, long-term code and start writing crap, so they can check off the list for the end of the year. Things slow down by the end of December, that a few things on the list won't get done becomes accepted, people go on Christmas vacation. That's why bugs go in in October/November.

Re:Budgets, schedules (2)

Megahard (1053072) | about 2 years ago | (#38440716)

I agree, for additional reasons. Large software projects generally have an end-of-year goal, because of both year-end financial goals and spending habits of customers - money that needs to be spent by the end of the year. Coding needs to be finished in time for QA and config to do their work. Thus, Oct and Nov.

I would expect staff changes (1)

jellomizer (103300) | about 2 years ago | (#38440620)

Collage grads get hired in June and July and get about 3, 4 months under their belt get use to what they need to do and start getting a little sloppy.
Also there is the rush to get the project out before the end of the year.

From experience (4, Interesting)

james_van (2241758) | about 2 years ago | (#38440638)

Couple of reasons from the office I work at - end of year deadlines means code gets rushed in Oct/Nov in order for testing and review before Christmas. Also, those of us who haven't taken all of our vacation time yet are forced to take time off, disrupting projects. Last minute client changes (to the projects due at the end of the year) add to the pile. And, the stress of the holidays plays a part as well (mostly because we're asocial geeks who are dreading the onslaught of family get-togethers and forced social situations). Usually by December, we've got our projects off for review and testing so there isn't much code being written, and the code that is being written is in response to problems and is a chance to take rushed, bad code and make it a little bit less bad. That's my little piece of anecdotal evidence.

Confusing headline (1)

houghi (78078) | about 2 years ago | (#38440652)

When I read the headline, it means that those are the best months to write code as nobody likes to write crappy code.

Probably it says differently in the thing below the subject, but I am not really interested in that.

Lost incentives (1)

multiben (1916126) | about 2 years ago | (#38440672)

October and November tend to be when rumours about not getting Christmas bonuses start circulating.

Re:Lost incentives (1)

mark-t (151149) | about 2 years ago | (#38440764)

I would think that a rumor about not getting any christmas bonus is roughly equivalent to a rumor about the sun being brighter than the moon.

In order to qualify as a "rumor", I'm pretty sure that there should remain even an inkling of doubt on its veracity.

Re:Lost incentives (2)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 2 years ago | (#38440956)

and what better way to make those rumours come true by slacking off!

Buggy code is pretty basic stuff... (5, Funny)

mark-t (151149) | about 2 years ago | (#38440702)

All you need to do is simulate the four wheels, and add a rigid body that can be approximated to a box for the main chasis. If you want to get fancy, you can use a polygonal mesh. Then you can use any old physics engine, and presto... you have a buggy.

It's writing the code for the horses that's a real bitch. There's AI and stuff, and figuring out how the horse should react emotionally to various situations... THAT'S one hell of a challenge.

Re:Buggy code is pretty basic stuff... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38441442)

All you need to do is simulate the four wheels, and add a rigid body that can be approximated to a box for the main chasis. If you want to get fancy, you can use a polygonal mesh. Then you can use any old physics engine, and presto... you have a buggy.

It's writing the code for the horses that's a real bitch. There's AI and stuff, and figuring out how the horse should react emotionally to various situations... THAT'S one hell of a challenge.

Pretty much all buggy code starts out "All you need to do is..."

Re:Buggy code is pretty basic stuff... (2)

lennier (44736) | about 2 years ago | (#38441478)

All you need to do is simulate the four wheels, and add a rigid body that can be approximated to a box for the main chasis. If you want to get fancy, you can use a polygonal mesh. Then you can use any old physics engine, and presto... you have a buggy.

Yes, but getting buggy whips right seems to be are whole lot harder, since all the vendors keep going out of business.

Black Friday/Holiday Push (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440734)

I wonder what code bases are being judged for this. I currently work in retail and I wouldn't be surprised if Oct/Nov produced the largest amounts of bugs as we slam crap code in for and react to Black Friday, our "Superbowl"...depending on the institutions looked at, all other things being equal I'd expect to see skewed results caused by the retail sector alone could be the cause of the anomaly.

Rush to ship for Christmas, especially games (1)

perpenso (1613749) | about 2 years ago | (#38440748)

Its probably the rush to make it to market for the Christmas season, "doing whatever it takes" to meet the deadline, code for "taking shortcuts" and "cutting corners". This phenomena is especially applicable to video games.

Another manifestation of the pressure to ship for Christmas is moving features from the original launch of the game to the expansion pack.

Re:Rush to ship for Christmas, especially games (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440950)

This is true. Often when i'm coding I find myself telling myself

"Well, I really should do it this way.. but based on time constraints, i'm not going to. Even though it may be more costly in the future, management can deal with it then instead of me not having a job now"

November! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38440750)

No sun - no moon!
No morn - no noon -
No dawn - no dusk - no proper time of day.
No warmth, no cheerfulness, no healthful ease,
No comfortable feel in any member -
No shade, no shine, no butterflies, no bees,
No fruits, no flowers, no leaves, no birds! -
November!
- Thomas Hood (1844)

code freeze?? (2)

mrmtampa (231295) | about 2 years ago | (#38440912)

Many shops have a code freeze prior to the new year so there's a big push to get things in. SQA falters.

What are the best months... (1)

mario_grgic (515333) | about 2 years ago | (#38440914)

for writing bad code?

Psyche, psychological atmosphere. (0)

unity100 (970058) | about 2 years ago | (#38440932)

october, november are the months when the weather gets noticeably colder, then cold. and with this progression, not only people but all biosphere (animals, trees, insects) start preparing for winter. everyone gets their biorhythm reduced by the cold, people inevitably start shutting in, everyone turns introvert.

the secret here lies in the fact that it is a transition period - from autumn, to winter - once the process completes around december, and biology of the organisms are used to cold and comfortable in a rhythm, things look up.

Start of Flue Season (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | about 2 years ago | (#38441268)

According to wikipedia: In the United States, the flu season is considered October through May

Strange Statistics (1)

Oswald (235719) | about 2 years ago | (#38441080)

From TFA:

I saw an average flaw density of 24 flaws per megabyte of executable code and a median flaw density of 3 flaws per megabyte of executable code.

Seriously? I don't claim to be learned in the art and science of software QA, but WTF is up with this? Apparently, a relative handful of programs are pulling the average quality way, way down. Is there no way to identify these abortions and abort them?

Re:Strange Statistics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38441422)

Nope. They've got seniority. ;)

Re:Strange Statistics (1)

lennier (44736) | about 2 years ago | (#38441568)

Apparently, a relative handful of programs are pulling the average quality way, way down. Is there no way to identify these abortions and abort them?

Anything from Adobe.

What worries me is not so much how much buggy code is written, but the fact that we still don't seem to have any way of detecting buggy code before it ships. (And yet the black hats are consistently able to detect these flaws after the writers ship the flawed code). I'm talking basic fundamental things like "does this code allow buffer overruns". You'd think after 60-odd years of compiler design that there'd be at least some kind of mechanical way we could prevent these whole classes of really dumb security errors. Something like "write in a language which doesn't allow arbitrary pointer arithmetic operations" perhaps?

No, of course not, that would mean our code was 100% correct but 95% as fast, and we absolutely need millions of Windows boxes to get rooted with 5% extra speed.

Re:Strange Statistics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38442550)

Thank you - I'm glad I'm not the only one that thinks this way.

The only time I think speed might be an issue is when you're running on a supercomputer, because that compute time is expensive. But if you're doing that then you're probably coding in Fortran anyway (dear god why???).

The christmas deadline (1)

LordZardoz (155141) | about 2 years ago | (#38441100)

One of the most frustrating things to deal with as a game developer is the tendency for publishers to try very damn hard to hit a Christmas shiping target. To get through the lot check / TRC process, you pretty much have to be finishing up by September or October. That leaves November for going in and out of lotcheck and giving enough lead time to manufacture the game (if your not shipping a digital product).

For any software project that is tied to a consumer retail project, your probably going to have to hit a similar deadline. Based on that, I can see this result coming about. People are rushed to hit the deadline and the scrutiny is higher.

END COMMUNICATION

So what are the best months? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38441218)

> October, November the Worst Months For Writing Buggy Code

As someone who strives for buggy code, what are the best months for producing such code?

Pay Us (1)

pntkl (2187764) | about 2 years ago | (#38441842)

For me, this year, October and November would be buggier, as a result of missing three paychecks (i.e. inability to focus, working for free).

Re:Pay Us (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 2 years ago | (#38442872)

...worried about mortgage, living on taco bell... Been there.

Reasons (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38442014)

* It's shitty outside.
* You want to get home before it's dark, so you leave early.
* The whole office is getting sick.
* Every freaking thing is due at once.
* Half the people on your team are on vacation.
* The other half of your team hasn't had a day off since June.
* You're distracted by the holiday insanity.
* You are suffering from SAD.
* Kids school activities are peaking.
* You just gained ten pounds in one week, and you're depressed about it.
* You've switched to your winter beer choices, which are like double the ABV of your summer beers
* Etc...

So when (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38442228)

is the best time to write buggy code?

Holiday food (1)

sandytaru (1158959) | about 2 years ago | (#38442236)

I blame all the holiday food in the office. Starting out with the candy that appears in early October and ending with the foodfest of Thanksgiving. December is more about running around buying stuff than it is eating, so no half-stuffed sleepy coders are missing semi-colons right now.

Best month for buggy code (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38442394)

If it's buggy code you want, that makes October/November the best time to write it.

Probably a bug in Veracode's code... (1)

dpbsmith (263124) | more than 2 years ago | (#38442502)

"When I told you 'thirty days hath September,' I didn't HEX!"

it is a kids problem (1)

superwiz (655733) | more than 2 years ago | (#38442646)

just not the developers' kids. it's the problem of developers who are kids. they get hired in may. write some prototype in 1 month and then spend 3-4 months trying to extend it just to find out that writing "just code" doesn't scale too well.

bad heading (4, Informative)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 2 years ago | (#38442858)

Should read "October, November are the *best* days for writing buggy code." They're the worst days, apparently, for writing bug-free code.

When I Get Sick (1)

Mia'cova (691309) | more than 2 years ago | (#38443078)

That's around the time of the year I'm most often to get sick. When I feel like shit, I don't think/care at a normal capacity. For me, it's all about trying to stay healthy. Of course, it doesn't help when you're working with a bunch of sick coworkers..

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>