Bugnotes

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been experimenting with taking notes on the bugs I’ve been fixing in Evernote.

I’ve always taken notes on my bugs, but usually in some disposable text file that gets tossed away once the bug is completed.

Evernote gives me more powers, like embedded images, checkboxes, etc. It’s really quite nice, and it lets me export to HTML.

Now that I have these notes, I thought it might be interesting to share them. If I have notes on a bug, here’s what I’m going to aim to do when the bug is closed:

  • Publish my notes on my new Bugnotes site1
  • Comment in the bug linking to my notes
  • Add a “bugnotes” tag to my comment with the link

I’ve just posted my first bugnote. It’s raw, unedited, and probably a little hard to follow if you don’t know what I’m working on. I thought maybe it’d be interesting to see what’s going on in my head as I fix a bug. And who knows, if somebody needs to re-investigate a bug or a related bug down the line, these notes might save some people some time.

Anyhow, here are my bugnotes. And if you’re interested in doing something similar, you can fork it (I’m using Jekyll for static site construction).

1 person likes this post.

  1. I didn’t want to pollute this blog with them (plus, dumping these files into WordPress seemed to be a bit heavy)  

3 thoughts on “Bugnotes

  1. Ben Bucksch

    It’s great that you take notes like that.

    I think it would be useful to publish them on Bugzilla, too. However, please post them directly into bugzilla as comment, so that we
    have all in one place. Third party sites can always go away, be
    purchased and get closed down, close unused accounts, purge old data,
    change access policies etc.. Bugzilla is ours. All data related to bugs
    should be in bugzilla and hg.

    It would be nice to *additionally* post the link to Evernote in
    bugzilla, though.

  2. karl, La Grange

    So what I didn’t understand is why you didn’t publish as comments your notes in the bug itself. When I analyze something, I put also the narration of my analysis in the bug and my progress even if I’m not sure it is the right thing. So in that way other people see what paths (wrong and good) I have taken.

  3. Mike Post author

    @BenB:

    I could post them into the bug, yes – but for some of my more, er, advanced notes, I’d lose all of my screenshots / graphics that I’ve pasted in. I could zip it up as an HTML document with assets in a subfolder, and attach it to the bug though. The drawback there, however, would be no searchability. :/

    @karl:

    I don’t post these directly into the bug because oftentimes there are many people Cc’d on a bug, and I don’t want to spam them. Also, the stuff going into my notes is me exploring and learning, and that’s not really what should be in a bug. I think the _discoveries_ related to the bug should be put into a bug comment (and that’s where I put them), but my exploratory notes are less appropriate. I think perhaps packaging it all up and tossing it into a bug attachment might be the best way forward, though it does irk me that it won’t get indexed.

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