This is a true story.

Pilot fish works at a big company and manages testing code.

Every week she emails the group doing testing with the pertinent information. What URLs will they use, and so on.

This day, she sends out the standard email to multiple groups: Hi, testing is up at Please replace foo with your application name and reply by email to confirm your test was successfull.

Everyone seems to be trucking along until her phone rings.

User: I can’t get in to ProgramB
Fish: What error are you getting?
User: A 404. Is this because I’m new?
Fish: *typing* Gee, I can get in. Send me a screen shot?

The screenshot shows that the User is going to, rather than Fish calls the user back and explains this, and the partner tries to log in again. She still can’t get in. Fish suggests dumping her IE cache, which now gives a new error. Access denied.

Knowing the partner is new and that IDs need to be set up on the test server specially, Fish asks if someone else can test while a ticket it put in to set up the ID on the test server. This manages to get testing done, but surprise surprise, the phone rings again later.

User: Hi, we’re done testing and it’s okay. I couldn’t email you, because I don’t have an ID to log into a computer yet, and I don’t have a computer yet, so I had my coworker email you. Is that okay?
Fish: Yes … You know, if you don’t have an ID to log into any computer, you won’t be able to log into the test site. The IDs are related.
User: Oh. That explains a lot. Thanks!

Fish sighs and tells her coworker, “I have no idea how she thought she was going to even test if she doesn’t have a computer!”

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