Remy Porter

Remy Porter lives in Pittsburgh, PA. During his ten years of IT work, he's been a helpdesk monkey, an independent contractor, a technical trainer and most recently a lead developer for an international company.

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Companies beyond a certain size all follow the same basic pattern. Where possible, everything gets centralized in the global office- email, web servers, Active Directory, etc. They dictate policy and then leave it to the extremeties to solve their own problems within the corporate boundaries. Al worked at a factory, supporting their production management and chemicals management software- things that couldn’t be centralized.


The Factory pattern is an excellent way to solve a variety of programming problems using an object-oriented language. It’s a simple pattern, but for some developers, not quite simple enough. Den found this interface :

Code Comedians

When it comes to bad code, everybody thinks they’re a comedian. Heck, look at us! Stupid programmer jokes are a game everyone can play, though, so let’s enjoy an evening at the Improv with some code comedians.


College radio stations are small, but highly technical organizations. The era of the scruffy stoner spinning disks and mumbling into a microphone have been replaced by software systems that manage the station’s programming around the clock, and play recorded segments of scruffy stoners mumbling into microphones.

Excel-lent Design

The user’s incident report did not contain the most useful description of the problem. “The calculator always outputs zero,” it said. Fortunately for Aram, he had a little bit of an idea of the context, and he knew that the issue was in the Customer/Regulation Administration Processor.

Battleship Booleans

Barry’s first problem with the code was the use of magic numbers. If the application state variable held “127”, it then certain buttons would be enabled, but if it were “54”, then they should be disabled.

Psychic Code

Like snakes and mongooses , QA and developers are natural enemies. Through an unfortunate series of events, developer Bridget found herself working on a QA team. She was deep in enemy territory, and not full prepared for the rigors of QA, so she focused on her core developer skills. She helped the testers automate things.

Truth or Sim

A huge number of the bad code submitted to TDWTF is related to dates. This isn’t all that surprising- dates are very complex data structures with a vast number of possible representations and huge cultural variations.
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November 2012

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