In a recent post she explores (or re-explore) a book "Does my gold fish know who Am I" and in the narration that follows the central theme of curious and urgent questions by kids, I found a paragraph about news. I could immediately make a connection with how software metrics are produced and consumed.
Thanks to my confirmation bias towards anything that criticizes software metrics - I sat down, this sunday afternoon (while busy in finishing all piled up work) to write this post. If you feel strong about any idea to write about (for a blogger) - you would find time to write about it.
For a question "what news papers will do when there is no news" -
"Newspapers don’t really go out and find the news: they decide what gets to count as news. The same goes for television and radio ....The important thing to remember, whenever you’re reading or watching the news, is that someone decided to tell you those things, while leaving out other things. They’re presenting one particular view of the world — not the only one. There’s always another side to the story"
Management's preference for numbers and summarized data - it is very easy to hide things that matter. And there is always another side to the story - sorry the numbers (numbers themselves are astonishingly incapable of telling any story leave alone telling the right story). Why this works (or apparently works) - our brains are wired for optimism - we like to hear good stories (good numbers) and most importantly stories that confirm our existing world view. Here is where critical thinking comes as savior. To me critical thinking is about questioning ones' own suppositions and line of thinking. "Am I missing anything here?" or "Is my understanding right, should I seek some contradictory information if exists" - are examples of critical thinking. For software testers - this is very CRITiCAL - we should last person to say "all right this is right".
Sadly as is the case with news, the metrics madness goes on - consultants year after year mint money in the name of software engineering, software process and metrics rule our life as software folks.
While I am writing all this - I need to be critically thinking as well - Am I being overly negative and dismissive about metrics and news?