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Categorizing Why Bugs Can Be Tricky

Julia Evans has a list:

Hello! I’m very slowly working on writing a zine about debugging, so I asked on Twitter the other day:

If you’ve run into a bug where it felt “impossible” to understand what was happening – what made it feel that way?

Of course, bugs always happen for logical reasons, but I’ve definitely run into bugs that felt like they might be impossible for me to understand (until I figured them out!)

I got about 400 responses, which I’ll try to summarize here. I’m not going to talk about how to deal with these various kinds of “impossible” bugs in this post, I’ll just try to classify them.

Click through for the major categories, as well as explanations and sub-categories. I think an interesting follow-up to this is to ask why we find ourselves in situations where we get these sorts of bugs and what (if anything) we can do to minimize or eliminate the likelihood of their appearance.