hippy
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Re: Missing half the skill?

Thu Oct 15, 2020 11:43 am

Imperf3kt wrote:
Wed Oct 14, 2020 8:56 pm
Hopefully nobody else chimes in with the can of sardines, and the poster is left with no alternative but to actually follow your advice (or go elsewhere to be spoon-fed)
That presumes that forcing them to do what you want them to do or abandoning them to their fate is the best way to help people. Not everyone agrees with that. The politics of aid and assistance applies here as much as it does anywhere.

In deciding no one gets an answer, should only be pointed to how to find an answer for themselves, one is heading towards the ultimate answer to every question being RTFM or "Google it". Anything more can be considered hand-holding, spoon-feeding, not helping them.

If we hold to no one chiming in, then no one should chime in with anything else after RTFM or "Google it" has been supplied.

We will have pretty much defined RTFM and "Google it" as the Only True Answer.
Imperf3kt wrote:
Wed Oct 14, 2020 8:56 pm
This will naturally separate those who are lazy and cannot be bothered learning, from those who are eager and will go far.
Categorising people as lazy and cannot be bothered learning ignores that this is not always the reason people simply want a straight answer to their question.

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Imperf3kt
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Re: Missing half the skill?

Thu Oct 15, 2020 12:04 pm

hippy wrote:
Thu Oct 15, 2020 11:43 am
In deciding no one gets an answer, should only be pointed to how to find an answer for themselves, one is heading towards the ultimate answer to every question being RTFM or "Google it". Anything more can be considered hand-holding, spoon-feeding, not helping them.

If we hold to no one chiming in, then no one should chime in with anything else after RTFM or "Google it" has been supplied.

We will have pretty much defined RTFM and "Google it" as the Only True Answer.
I think you missed the first half of my post, I never said to not give an answer, I said not to spoon feed an answer. You're not being paid so why should you be forced to do the work for them?

Start by explaining whats gone wrong and how to fix it. If they struggle, help them further. If they don't even try, then you stop trying.

You can lead a horse to water, but you can't force the horse to drink.
hippy wrote:
Thu Oct 15, 2020 11:43 am
Imperf3kt wrote:
Wed Oct 14, 2020 8:56 pm
This will naturally separate those who are lazy and cannot be bothered learning, from those who are eager and will go far.
Categorising people as lazy and cannot be bothered learning ignores that this is not always the reason people simply want a straight answer to their question.
I believe I covered this. I'll post it again, please read through it carefully, it covers pretty much every situation.
Bold added for emphasis of the important bits.
Imperf3kt wrote:
Wed Oct 14, 2020 3:05 am
My first response is usually to explain the error message and point to probable causes / fixes.

If the poster has trouble understanding my explanation, I'll explain why the error occurred (if I know) and give them a quick sample of code to try or something to change.

If they still don't understand, then I'll do one of three things.

If I have the time and the user is sufficiently struggling, I'll just put up some commented code and explain how to use it (sometimes this is usually just a snippet from something I wrote in a project of my own or something I wrote from memory of the syntax without reference) it won't work as is, but it gives them a big head start. Ordinarily, tweaking it to suit their needs and comparing it with how they were going about it, teaches them enough to understand what happened and why.

If I suspect they are just being lazy, I generally point to the documentation and stop replying.

If I suspect it is beyond their skill level, I suggest an alternative
Last edited by Imperf3kt on Thu Oct 15, 2020 8:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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thagrol
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Re: Missing half the skill?

Thu Oct 15, 2020 12:33 pm

Imperf3kt wrote:
Thu Oct 15, 2020 3:29 am
^ the True tester is likely being paid a salary and not a hobbyist fiddling with a non-critical system.
Not necessarily. It's a mind set.

A system doesn't have to be critical to be of high quality. Equally there are times when "it works under ideal conditions" is good enough.

I've worked with testers who never get beyond novice with any amount of training. Testers who never develop the attention to details needed. Who never develop the understanding and imagination to reach the heights of true tester.

I've seen programmers change what they consider finished as a result of working with good testers.

Exhaustive testing is defensive. It finds problems before someone else does. It stops you having to come back to the code long after you considered it finished and have forgotten exactly why your did what you did. That's especially import for hobbyists.

It's also about your reputation. Releasing some code (open source or otherwise) that has easily triggered bugs is going to have a negative impact.

As for paid testers, there's a whole other skill set they need above the testing ones. Not least of which are a thick skin, diplomacy, knowing when a programmer is pushing back with excues, knowing when to fight your corner and when to walk away.
Arguing with strangers on the internet since 1993.

All advice given is based on my experience. it worked for me, it may not work for you.
All GPIO pin numbers are BCM numbers.

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jahboater
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Re: Missing half the skill?

Fri Oct 16, 2020 9:18 am

thagrol wrote:
Thu Oct 15, 2020 12:33 pm
As for paid testers, there's a whole other skill set they need above the testing ones. Not least of which are a thick skin, diplomacy, knowing when a programmer is pushing back with excuses, knowing when to fight your corner and when to walk away.
Also taking the time to fully understand the (new) product.
Predicting how customers might use the product (often different from what the developers envisioned - hence the importance of a beta program).
Pi4 8GB (Raspberry Pi OS 64-bit), Pi4 4GB, Pi4 2GB, Pi1 Rev 1 256MB, Pi Zero

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thagrol
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Re: Missing half the skill?

Fri Oct 16, 2020 12:10 pm

jahboater wrote:
Fri Oct 16, 2020 9:18 am
thagrol wrote:
Thu Oct 15, 2020 12:33 pm
As for paid testers, there's a whole other skill set they need above the testing ones. Not least of which are a thick skin, diplomacy, knowing when a programmer is pushing back with excuses, knowing when to fight your corner and when to walk away.
Also taking the time to fully understand the (new) product.
Predicting how customers might use the product (often different from what the developers envisioned - hence the importance of a beta program).
Yep though both of those are part of the test case design process. Beta programs don't always help though nor is there always time for one.

None of that helps with the real world situation where the customer says I want A, the coder interprets that as B, then on delivery you find out the customer actually wanted Z.

Good requirements analysts are needed for that though astute programmers can help by not making assumptions and asking for clarification.
Arguing with strangers on the internet since 1993.

All advice given is based on my experience. it worked for me, it may not work for you.
All GPIO pin numbers are BCM numbers.

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