“Shortly after joining my new company,” writes Rajesh Subramanian, “they introduced me to The Monster: a massive, incomplete framework written in C++. Its documentation consisted of a few sparse, often contradictory comments. It was designed to be multithreaded, but always crashed with more than one thread. It was expected to run on different operating systems, but never quite made it past Windows 2000 SP3. And naturally, it’s filled with friendly variable names like s, t, pp1, pp2, and so on.”

“One of my first tasks – an ‘easy one’ – was to fix The Nightly Session Drop. For as long as anyone could remember, The Monster would disconnect at exactly midnight and reconnect a moment later. This would occasionally lead to ‘really bad things’ that could take all day to fix. So, after a half day of diving head first into The Monster, I found this line of code complete with comment…”

//A day has passed by... this must be definitely an invalid session
if (m_thisDay != date.T_day) Disconnect(SESSION_PREV, FORCE); 

Rajesh added, “and to think… this is just the beginning.”