I work at a tech company! There is some debate if I should or should not actually work there. I’m the one who is doing most of the debating.
I work in software testing! I make sure that when a software developer says, “this thing works”, it actually works. When it doesn’t work, that’s called a “bug”. I never really thought that much into why it’s called a bug. When a person gets sick, you say, “they caught a bug.” Maybe it’s the same for computers?*
This week the National Women’s History Museum posted the following photo of Grace Hopper:
She did lots of things that, trust me, are so cool if you work in IT: She invented the first compiler for a computer programming language, set standards for computer testing, and her work helped pioneer a new software language. These are cool things! She also came up with the phrase “debugging” as it pertains to computer glitches. You find a bug. Then you debug it. See?
So after sharing this with my coworkers, this beauty is unearthed: The first actual case of a computer bug.
They found an actual bug in the computer! As Hopper was working with her associates, they discovered a moth in a computer relay. As they removed it, she remarked they were “debugging” the system. It’s a bug! In a computer! This is a pun come to life! You guys!
Reason I shouldn’t work at a tech company: I’m far too amused by the pun-potential of a bug tapped to a paper.
*Well, now I’m spiraling off into the origins of the phrase “caught a bug.” Does that come from IT history? Did IT get it from the phrase? I NEED ANSWERS! Stay tuned.