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Old 08-13-2019, 06:16 AM   #1
Tera
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Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

I just saw this on tik tok.
It reminded me how my colleagues use my apps.


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Old 08-13-2019, 06:58 AM   #2
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

I can relate. But...and I guess I am lucky in this regard, I have two users who will find the ONE thing I overlooked and find it quickly.

I use them as beta testers. If they run out of "bugs" chances are no one else will find one either!
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Old 08-13-2019, 07:00 AM   #3
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

I wish I could find someone too.

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Old 08-13-2019, 07:16 AM   #4
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tera View Post
I wish I could find someone too.
Bugs are inevitable. What I don't like is when users don't tell you there's a problem and either just live with it or find creative ways to get around it.
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Old 08-13-2019, 07:26 AM   #5
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

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Originally Posted by theDBguy View Post
Bugs are inevitable. What I don't like is when users don't tell you there's a problem and either just live with it or find creative ways to get around it.
I have those too, and it is annoying. Had a recent situation where I was integrating functionality in my app to a third party app. The functionality in my app was fine so the users didn't bother telling me they were getting an error message, even though I had told them about the integration and to tell me if they got any errors. Arrg!!
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Old 08-13-2019, 07:28 AM   #6
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tera View Post
I just saw this on tik tok.
It reminded me how my colleagues use my apps.
That's funny! There are users that have an uncanny knack for finding ways of doing things you didn't anticipate. I guess anticipating them makes us better developers.
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Old 08-13-2019, 07:30 AM   #7
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

Quote:
Originally Posted by theDBguy View Post
Bugs are inevitable. What I don't like is when users don't tell you there's a problem and either just live with it or find creative ways to get around it.
Almost as annoying as finishing up the change request, rolling out a new function that is on their "Must have" list, and going back 6 months later to see they never use it.

Really hated seeing a call center passing out calculators at a sight I'd done a system for selling services at. One of their managers asked "Can't we get the computer to do this for us?"

I looked them in the face, put my hands to the sides of my head, and looked to be in deep thought for a few seconds. Then I said "Press Control K".

To their amazement a fully functional calculator popped up on their screen, preloaded with the value for the entry they were in.

"How did you do that?" I was asked.

I didn't mention it had been there for HALF A YEAR BECAUSE THEY HAD ASKED FOR IT...

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Old 08-13-2019, 07:42 AM   #8
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

Quote:
Originally Posted by theDBguy View Post
Bugs are inevitable. What I don't like is when users don't tell you there's a problem and either just live with it or find creative ways to get around it.
Just been to a training session for our new computer system that the charity is going to use and hence myself as a user. This has been thoroughly UAT tested before being rolled out for training.

You select an address from a list after putting in a postcode, and selecting the Find button.

The address list is presented as follows
Code:
1 Address Line1
10 Address Line1
110 Address Line1
2 Address Line1
20 Address Line1
210 Address Line1
211 Address Line1
8 Address Line1
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Old 08-13-2019, 08:20 AM   #9
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gasman View Post
I saw this on twitter. It made me laugh so hard.


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Old 08-13-2019, 08:20 AM   #10
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

MANY years ago I worked for a company that made specialty control systems with a display and a keyboard with a ton of special keys. We had a brand new system and were ready for a phase-one customer demo - to show that while we weren't done, we WERE making some progress on their contract. (That way we could bill them for X percent of contract value.)

Their chief operator liked what he saw but said he had to give us the ass-id test (he drew it that way on purpose.) So he sat on the special keyboard. Not more than 15 seconds later he crashed the system. He explained that his operators would casually sit where they shouldn't be sitting because while they weren't minimum wage, they weren't likely candidates for the Nobel Prize either. He exposed the flaw that our system didn't protect itself from buffer overflows. That fix went in IMMEDIATELY and after that, we never again crashed a system.

A couple of weeks later we were talking about hiring a tester to help us foolproof our programs. However, that led to a discussion of how we might advertise for the position: "Help Wanted - Perfect Fool - to test foolproof programs." When the laughter died down, the next question was "But what fool would hire him?" Followed by "If he's such a fool, why would he even apply for the job? What fool WOULD apply?" Needless to say, the rest of the afternoon was foolishly wasted.
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Old 08-13-2019, 09:07 AM   #11
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

I agree that bugs are inevitable and that users will not pass on info about bugs they experience.

For one of my schools apps, I went through adding automatic error logging code to every procedure. Its a huge app and doing so took me several weeks. As well as logging error details (who/what/where/when etc) to a table, the code 'silently' emailed me the error log. I had asked permission to do this beforehand but the individual users were totally unaware of this happening.
When I rolled out the new system the first few weeks were hell with a lot of emails related to a fairly small number of errors from a limited number of users.

I fixed all those bugs, released an update and the emails stopped. Its now been about 18 months since any errors occurred.

So as far as I'm concerned, job done.
The code proved its worth by the fact that its now apparently redundant

Some time prior to that I also added a process to log the use of each feature in the same app.
Doing so allowed me to prioritise updates according to usage.
Like Mark said, I had previously spent a lot of time delivering requested updates that were rarely used.
The usage log gave me evidence to support why certain requests were more important than others.
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Old 08-14-2019, 05:41 AM   #12
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

My biggest Access system for the Navy had that logging idea, though it didn't silently e-mail me the logs. The security guys were pretty cool about a lot of things but they shut the door on the idea of silent e-mails even for one of our own (i.e. not 3rd party) apps. I wanted to, but they said no. All e-mail had to be consciously triggered.

I gently refrained from comments about how some civil servants would never send any e-mail at all under that requirement. After all, the security guys were civil service, too.
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Old 08-14-2019, 06:02 AM   #13
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

In a couple of my systems I started logging which reports were being run and if they were being exported to excel, and by who.

I wasn't being nosey, just intrigued about which of the 4 million slightly similar report options I'd been asked to create were actually being used...
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Old 08-14-2019, 06:39 AM   #14
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

I gave my clients the option to opt out of the error logging emails with a simple combo box yes/no setting controllable by program admins.
Although there was an initial hesitation by some clients, all agreed to it once they understood its purpose.
I had originally planned to include a screen grab as an email attachment but couldn't get working reliably.
However Anders Ebro has an excellent Access Crash Reporter utility with that feature (but not the email part)
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Old 08-14-2019, 06:48 AM   #15
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Re: Me as a developer and how my apps are used.

As my job doing QA for Sierra On-Line games, we were supposed to try things that would think that no one should. Unfortunately we missed an easter egg that a programmer had planted that we should have caught. Too many times we followed the script to just be able to get through the game.

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