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SubjectRe: Availability of kdb
Date
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"J. Dow" <jdow@earthlink.net> said:

[...]

> The point is that WITH a debugger you have to take that step as well.
> A person without the self discipline to do that is still a child and should
> not be in this business. The debugger gives you a better picture of what
> is actually happening. If that leverage is considered to be a bad thing
> I am surprised and dismayed. A bloody LOT of personal experience
> and technological bloody noses suggests it is a very good thing.

This is true as long as the debugger hooks have no (or very minimal) impact
on the instrumented system. Impossible (or very nearly so) in the case of a
massively parallel program like the kernel. Where it is possible it has
been done, in general. General hooks into the distributed subsystems inside
the kernel are only a bit easier to maintain than the instrumented code,
and they impact its performance, stability and readability.

You did not build a logic analyzer and circuit simulator into each and
every transmitter you built, did you?

I've used debuggers too, and do so sometimes to check on stuff I write when
I'm truly stumped, but in general I stay away from them. I (try to) write
stuff in modular, cleanly separate parts with (I hope) well understood
interactions. That makes isolating bugs easy enough without a detailed
step-by-step following of the program, at least most of the time. Debuggers
_can_ be useful, no question about that. But you can also waste a huge
amount of time with them. They just give you _one_ very narrow picture of
what is going on, and that picture is from a quite useless perspective most
of the time.
--
Dr. Horst H. von Brand mailto:vonbrand@inf.utfsm.cl
Departamento de Informatica Fono: +56 32 654431
Universidad Tecnica Federico Santa Maria +56 32 654239
Casilla 110-V, Valparaiso, Chile Fax: +56 32 797513
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