.\Matthew Long

{An unsorted collection of thoughts}

Ceasing work for christmas can have unexpected benefits…

Posted by Matthew on January 6, 2009

Obviously much like many others tools were downed over the christmas period to a certain degree.  While I was still required to be in the office in order to support any users (most of whom had the common sense to not come in..) I didn’t manage to get any further progress done on a network diagnosis tool I’m developing for desktop machines.

So obviously, I cracked open Visual Studio this morning and begun coding once more, and found that two things had happened:

  1. Significant portions of my code suddenly appeared alien, and I had to spend some time familiarsing myself with them again.
  2. I noticed quite a few bugs that had previously gone unnoticed…

None of the bugs were anything major (aside from assuming that every mail transfer agent encountered would happily act as an open relay because your application never checked to see if recipients were on different domains and performed extra MX lookups accordingly…) but it made me quite glad that I intentionally took a break from it.  While I may have lost an hour while I retraced my steps with project, i’ve saved countless hours and headaches with the operational bugs I wouldn’t have noticed without a fresh look.

Of course, you could also achieve this effect by having a code editor and rigerous testing during development (not just after) but that would require more manpower than what has been assigned to the project (i.e, me!).

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