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Expecting to Fail

Article Source Linux Magazine
September 25, 2009, 2:36 pm

A few days ago, after the latest in a seemingly never ending string of problems that interrupted connectivity between two of our data centers, coworker #1 said something like “why can’t we have a network that just works?!” The exasperation in his voice is something we all felt to some degree or another. Moments later coworker #2 piped up and said “if our network was perfect, the software you write wouldn’t be nearly as robust.”

There’s a lot of truth to that. I find myself writing software a bit differently now than I did seven or eight years ago, even though I was working on high-traffic web sites then and still am now. The single biggest difference is that I try to expect everything to fail. Everything...

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