August 16, 2007

Skype on the test of a utility

So how do you know if you are a utility? Crash the system, and see how far the ripples spread.

Skype is down. Their blog reports some sort of network issue that blocks logins.

It's worth tracking to see how the world responds, how dependent the users have become on their Skype feed.

If you really want to be reliable, you need to let the accidents happen. Even, inject some unreliability. I like failure. I for one get perverse enjoyment from bugs. Once I see bugs in software, I like to leave them in there to shake out other bugs. Problems beget more problems, and once I've shaken a system for all its worth, I like to work from the furtherest and easiest, inwards, testing as I go.

It's always a moment of sadness when the last, deepest most convoluted prize bug gets fixed, and the system bursts back into stable, reliable life. Boring, and sad. No more art in life.

Skype to date has been far too reliable for my liking, which may mean it's heading for some reliability problems. You just can't buy the sort of entertainment that the Skype engineers are enjoying today :)

Posted by iang at August 16, 2007 09:45 AM | TrackBack

Just sitting in Saint Petersburg, having lost my Austrian Bankomat-card (locked now), trying to get some money with my credit-card (already worked once, now suddenly my pin-code is required ...). Skype not working to check with my bank in Austria ... isn't it always like that in life? One comes to the other. In computer-sciences they call it a bug. Well, don't know what to call it in real life, but the basic principles of failure seem to be the same. Isn't it just human?

Posted by: stefan at August 16, 2007 01:25 PM
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