Detective work @ work

Sometime ago, many people left jobs here at the company I work for; this was a “voluntary retirement” and since many were IT guys, many knowledge left the company with them too. Suddenly all the work from a co-worker and good friend of mine who left the company became my responsibility.

He was (is!!) a very intelligent guy, we called him “bobby” (he´s called Hector), but his programs and scripts are particularly hard to read and understand. He always made lots of little programming gems (shell scripts, php, awk…) but with absolutely no documentation. In fact from time to time I discover some new application written by him in the past and that nobody knows about.

Worse than that, sometimes someone reports a problem with app X and come to me for a solution. Obviously either I do not have any idea of the existence of that app, or I do know about it but was hoping it never breaks.

This seems a really bad scenario and in fact it is, but because I do not have other alternative I always end looking at this applications and trying to solve the mistery of how it works, and in the end I always get hooked to it and really enjoy this detective work. Don´t know why, probably because he was one of the smartest minds here and probably getting to undestand his creations makes me proud of myself.


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