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Last week one of our customers was trying to update some data through a web API.
Unfortunately, the data was not inserted through the API and as such was missing some data necessary for everything to work.
I spoke to her on the phone and explicitly said "if you send me the user names and codes (that they have) I can fix everything and stuff will work from then on."
She told me she could send more data, but I insisted, I only need the user names and codes.
She just send me an Excel sheet with 43 fields, but the code field is not included...
I can't help but think they do this stuff on purpose...
No. We write the software that only lets the user do what the user needs to do, within our (software services) control.
If the user needs to correct records in a database, then we provide the GUI|toolset for them to do "just" that. When we (the software engineer) do this correctly, then all is fine with the world. We (the software engineer) do not correct the record(s) for them, which I think is what Sander was mentioning, more or less.
Giving them unconstrained access to modify the database to "fix" their own problems? That never ends well.
I did not say this.
Richard Deeming wrote:
Giving them a tool to make very specific corrections might work, so long as it walks them through, holds their hand, and has a metric crapton of sanity checks.
And if you, as as software engineer, cannot/will not do this, then I would have to fire you from my team. Just saying... It is actually not as bad as you make it out to be. As I said, our shop has been doing this for our users for over 5 years now with great results.
In a perfect world, yes.
Unfortunately, it's not that easy.
First, who is going to pay for such a tool (us, our customer, their customer who we are doing this for)?
Second, this is a situation that we do not actually support. I'm not sure who did this only that I get to fix it.
Last, it shouldn't be a problem in the future (alright, I couldn't type that while keeping a straight face ).
Anyway, I'm not the one calling the shots so I just fix it.
I understand this completely! Not long ago, a client sent a spreadsheet with employee information to be imported into a timeclock application. All of the columns we requested, including the unique employee id were present, and the information went in without a hitch! It's too bad that she had decided to be helpful and sort a few columns before sending it! Somehow, some people with the same last names got their id numbers mixed up. It took a week to get it 'sorted' out! Ahh, fun times!