Question: what so bad about bug reports?

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Discussion of general topics related to the new release and its place in the world. Don't discuss new features, report bugs, ask for support, et cetera. Don't use this to spam for other boards or attack those boards!
code reader
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Question: what so bad about bug reports?

Post by code reader »

this is more to satisfy my curiosity than to try and change the policy, but i would really like to understand:
what so sinister about bug reports?
i am not talking about bug report of the kind "feature x doesnt work as i think its supposed to work" or "feature y doesnt work at all", but rather like "file w line z there is a bug: this should be that". (tempted to sneak in an actual example, but i resist)
i understand the developers would not want to get into lengthly discussions whether something is or isnt a bug, but sometimes things are very obvious.
again, i am asking mainly because i am curious.
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Re: Question: what so bad about bug reports?

Post by Yawnster »

If you have read the recent Comits Miek says that he has specifically broken certain parts of the code to make a certain part work.. he will then fix it at a later date.. im sure that he is aware that the part he has broken intentially is broken and thus doesnt really need a bug report.. As for the smaller details like styling problems etc.. the bug tracker will be open for a period after the first releases which will be the time for them i guess..
code reader
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Re: Question: what so bad about bug reports?

Post by code reader »

well, as it turns out, i didnt only read meik's comments, but actually the code, too.
temptation is great to show you why my question is still relevant, but this will be in effect a bug-report, something for which topics get locked here.

i would still want to hear from someone in the know what so bad about bug-reports.

it was my understanding that the "no bug report" rule was something psotfx implemented.
i just asked about the reasoning behind it, as i cant think of any good one.
of course, the developers are always free to ignore any bug report they do not agree with, and they are not required (or even requested) to explain their decision(s).
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Acyd Burn
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Re: Question: what so bad about bug reports?

Post by Acyd Burn »

We do not want bug reports at this stage because it is unfinished code, there will be always bugs, we create new, we fix some, we remove code... it could be the line you mention is even no longer present in our installations, everything is in flux, hence the warnings to not use CVS on a live site, it will be broken.

For example, if i do a new section, i normally spot a bug by simply viewing at it or because an error is generated, no need for anyone to point our noses at bugs, we will spot them earlier or later.

BTW, "code suggestions" fall into the same category. I simply do not want to hear: "hey, i request you change this because its much better" - those people are in no way in the position to demand changing something.

Once we hit the first beta we will open the bug tracker and everyone is invited to report bugs as hell - of course we are not able to test the software by our own and we will always oversee a bug.

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code reader
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Re: Question: what so bad about bug reports?

Post by code reader »

Thanks for the answer.
though i, personally, think this policy is not the best one for the project (after all, one of the most important advantages of open source vs. proprietary is the large scale peer review, which typically helps clean the code faster), i don't wish to begin an argument.
i respect your decision.
if, as i hope, by the time you'll be open for bug reports im still around, i'll submit those then...
have a good one.
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Acyd Burn
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Re: Question: what so bad about bug reports?

Post by Acyd Burn »

code reader wrote: though i, personally, think this policy is not the best one for the project (after all, one of the most important advantages of open source vs. proprietary is the large scale peer review, which typically helps clean the code faster), [...]
Of course, this is the reason why we have a bug tracker for our phpBB 2.0.x, the only stable and available board we have. phpBB3 is just development code, nothing more, in no way a finished product. And as i said, once it is in beta we will open the bug tracker for it too. Do you want bug reports for you code you write at this moment... you type if ( at this second and i scream at your back: "hey, wait, this is an incomplete if, you have to add a parameter, come on, come on". You would politely reply: "erm, i am currently typing, would be nice if you can wait until i finish my line, then you can tell me that something is looking strange." <- transposed to the whole CVS code of course.

A suggestion for those wanting to give bug reports: Write them down and report them to the bug tracker (once opened) if they still exist by then.

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Mark The Daemon
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Re: Question: what so bad about bug reports?

Post by Mark The Daemon »

code reader wrote: Thanks for the answer.
though i, personally, think this policy is not the best one for the project (after all, one of the most important advantages of open source vs. proprietary is the large scale peer review, which typically helps clean the code faster), i don't wish to begin an argument.
i respect your decision.
if, as i hope, by the time you'll be open for bug reports im still around, i'll submit those then...
have a good one.


You have to remember that the devlopers are constantly updating the codes; imagine if you reported a bug but a devloper had already fixed it. This would add more time to the project of getting the BETA and final release out

And do we all want to wait longer :?:


Mark
"Microsoft isn't the evil software company everyone thinks they are.
They just make crappy programs..."
Linus Torvalds, Creator of Linux OS
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Re: Question: what so bad about bug reports?

Post by smithy_dll »

Like Meik said, he already knows the major bugs that need his immediateattention, and all the little ones could turn into completely other bugs by the time phpBB is feature complete and ready for mass public testing.
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code reader
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Re: Question: what so bad about bug reports?

Post by code reader »

acydburn,
please take this as a discussion, not an argument.
the reason why many software teams have instituted a process called "code review" is because its a widely accepted claim, that the earlier a bug is discovered and fixed in the development cycle, the cheaper it is to fix it.

nobody (at least that i know of) is standing behind your back as you type.
otoh, when you commit the code to cvs, and someone spots a mistake, (it can be a meaningless typo such as writing if ($user_id = -1) when it is clear the meaning was ==), it will cost close to nothing to fix it now, when the line is still fresh in the developer's memory. in 6 months time, this will have to be rediscovered, and the cost of fixing it will be 3 times as high: the developer will have to read the code, understand it, and decide whether its really a bug.
if its not rediscovered then, the cost for fixing it in 18 months time will be at least ten times as high.
because of my personal nosyness, i try to look at the code thats commited as its comitted. if i spot a mistake, i would be glad to report it. even if the rate of junk reports to valid ones is 5 to 1, it is still very cheap: the code is fresh, you will immediately know whether this report is right or wrong, and will be able to discard the report or use it.
please dont beat me over the head with a dead fish, but i am going to give a concreete example, (and break the rules while doing it :twisted: . apologies. it is just to highlight my point):
on october 2nd, as a part of a significant commit, the following line fell through:

Code: Select all

foreach ($sql_insert_ary as $ary) {
        $db->sql_query('INSERT INTO ' . PRIVMSGS_TO_TABLE . ' ' . $db->sql_build_array('INSERT', $sql_insert_ary));
this is clearly a typo. unfortunately, it only pertain to db layer other than mysql, so its unlikely to be spotted anytime soon (its my understanding that vast majority if not all of testing is done on mysql systems).

i doubt im going to begin maintaining a log and accumulate this kind of stuff for the future unspeakable date when the bugtracker will be open, which probably means this bug will have to be rediscovered.

this is not really tragic, but (i think) its a waste of an available pool of good will.
again, i dont wish to argue and i respect your decision. i just wanted to air my views of the subject.
i will read anything anyone has to say on the subject with interest, but i doubt i will raise this point again.
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Acyd Burn
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Re: Question: what so bad about bug reports?

Post by Acyd Burn »

code reader wrote: acydburn,
please take this as a discussion, not an argument.
the reason why many software teams have instituted a process called "code review" is because its a widely accepted claim, that the earlier a bug is discovered and fixed in the development cycle, the cheaper it is to fix it.
And you do not think we are doing a code review before we release something we want bug reports from and want more testing and feedback from? ;)

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