Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Microsoft Shares Your Pain

1% of bugs caused 50% of all incredible system errors.

Microsoft's error reporting system has reduced about 80% of system –as they say- errors which encouraged them to make a new way of error reporting.

Microsoft has evolved a new way of customer feedback system. The idea is that Microsoft knows how pain customers suffer when a failure happens in any of their systems. So, Microsoft's employees must share pain with customers.

Thus, WSYP project or We Share Your Pain. WSYP was developed by Microsoft team in United Kingdom. This project claims that Microsoft can discover which programmer who wrote the piece of code which is responsible for this failure. Then, cause him a physical pain. This is done by a special Aeron chair. So, instead of seeing a message of Send Error Report Don't Send the user will see a message of Share Pain Don't Share. Then the customer will happily choose one of the 3 options for punishing this programmer. And see a live video of the programmer sharing pain with him.

Option 1: Micro-Stun option

Electric shocks are generated through the chair arm sleeves.

Option 2: Micro-Impact option

The back of the chair releases back and thrusts forward into the person sitting, into the chair.

Option 3: Micro-Jab option

Watch it in the video.

There is also an ejection option to eject the programmers who have commutative serious bugs out of Microsoft.

Share and Don't Share message box.

Live video so that customers see the programmer cause their system to fail being punished with the selected option.

Micro stun in action

Ejection mechanism after serious errors

The video and the presentation can be found at:


A very interesting video

It's interesting to see how Microsoft feels customers' pains.
I have the video it's about 20MB

Microsoft believes that this system will reduce system errors massively.

And I think by know you don't care about being employed at Microsoft.

Friday, December 8, 2006

The first bug

The first bug

Do you what's the first bug or where did the term "Bug" come from?

In 1945 and during the world war II Grace Murray Hopper and a team at the Harvard University were working on Mark II Aiken Relay Calculator.

This primitive computer was facing problems and matters were getting worth till they discovered the problem. It was a moth! A 2-inch moth was trapped at relay #70. The team used ordinary tweezers to remove that moth.

This photo is the log file left by the team.

Last line in this photo: First actual case of bug being found.

They said that they had “debugged” the machine. Thus they used “bug” to describe their problem.

Grace Murray Hopper (1906-1992) was an admiral at the American navy forces. The term “Bug” cannot be related to Grace Hopper because it was used before she used it. She made it popular. So this case didn’t introduce this term. “Bugs” was used during World War II to describe problems in radars. It was also during Thomas Edison's life to mean an industrial defect.

In days of telegraphy tapers need to send dots and dashes of Morse code. And there were the newer, semi-automatic keyers that would send a string of dots automatically. These semi-automatic keyers were called "bugs". These semi-automatic keyers require skilled operators. Or if you are not experienced you would send garbled Morse code.

Bugs and quotes:

  • Everyone knows that debugging is twice as hard as writing a program in the first place. So if you're as clever as you can be when you write it, how will you ever debug it? (Brian Kernighan)

  • When you say: "I wrote a program that crashed Windows", people just stare at you blankly and say: "Hey, I got those with the system -- for free." (Linus Torvalds)

  • Every program starts off with bugs. Many programs end up with bugs as well. There are two corollaries to this: first, you must test all your programs straight away. And second, there's no point in losing your temper every time they don't work.

  • There are no significant bugs in our released software that any significant number of users want fixed. (Bill Gates) have you any comment??

  • The only man who never makes mistakes is the man who never does anything. (Theodore Roosevelt)

  • Of all my programming bugs, 80% are syntax errors. Of the remaining 20%, 80% are trivial logical errors. Of the remaining 4%, 80% are pointer errors. And the remaining 0.8% are hard. (Marc Donner)

  • Sometimes it pays to stay in bed in Monday, rather than spending the rest of the week debugging Monday's code. (Dan Salomon)

So do you know where “Bugs” originated from?
I don’t know.

But it seems that Grace Murray Hopper case is the first actual bug found.