Scientists keep logbooks for their findings. Why don’t computer scientists?

A great place to start doing this is for debugging. Debugging sucks enough as is, make it easier on yourself. A logbook will…

๐Ÿ—บ Enumerate where you are in the bug fix journey.

You’ll forget this journey when you pick it up tomorrow, write it down.

๐ŸŒณ Keep you rooted to the ground. (Creating an “issue stack”.)

Related to above, it often feels like you’re completely lost in the aether when you’re 50 opened browser tabs deep into an issue that’s not even the same issue anymore, its a sub issue of a sub issue. You’re in a stack of issues. But, if you have each issue written down, as you solve one, you can pop it off the stack and solve the next issue one at a time. Keeping this stack in your head sucks, and its easy to conflate understandings from this current problem with the previous problem.

๐Ÿ” Make your future steps clearer.

With all your past attempts laid out in front of you, you will achieve Zen ๐Ÿง˜โ€โ™‚๏ธ With Zen, you can either find inner peace to decide you needn’t solve the bug, or you’ll know what to do next.

๐Ÿ˜“ Document the time and effort spent.

This is incredibly useful when showing your team what you’ve done (especially as bug fixing can feel very unproductive). This can also be the content of the issue you create on github.

๐Ÿป Document your eventual success and how it happened.

Highly underrated ๐Ÿฅ‚

Also, your writing career?

Cliff Stoll kept one which enabled him to find his hacker and retell the journey in his infamous: The Cuckoo’s Egg. So, keep a logbook for your future Pulitzer.