Why Computer People Are The Way They Are

There is a joke about computer programmers that goes something like this. I was thinking about why computer people, and programmers in specific, have this reputation. I would say it’s because of the simple idea of consistancy. When I was doing tech support and dealing with a QA team I spent a lot of time trying to find out if the problems reported were reproducable. If there isn’t a logical chain of events to follow, you can’t figure out what is wrong, or what went wrong. There is nothing more frustrating than trying to figure out what actually went wrong (as opposed to someone’s opinion) and them not having a clue as to what they did to break it. This is sometimes not a big deal if it’s a simple operation where there aren’t a lot of variables, but if it’s a complicated process, or the results aren’t consistant (ie: it works sometimes but not others), telling me “operation [whatever] didn’t work” does me no good. Tell me what you did, how you did it, exactly, and what happened each step of the way. This lets me, as someone who can dig into the actual code, follow what the code does, and correlate it with what you said you did. I can then figure out order of events through the code based on what happened.