What happened to Apple?

After lots of struggling at home yesterday with the sudden expiration of iOS 6.1 beta 4, now iTunes displays “Check Update” and “Restore iPhone…” buttons.

iTunes now displays "Check for Update" and "Restore iPhone..." buttons

iTunes now displays “Check for Update” and “Restore iPhone…” buttons

The iTunes didn’t display it yesterday, i.e. Jan. 27th, 2012 Pacific time.
Why it didn’t display those buttons yesterday?

Let’s point out a few things.
When a beta image was expired in previous versions ( I’m not just talking about iOS 6.x or 5.x. I have full experience with iOS since it’s beginning. ), they put some “allowance” or “cushion” days sufficiently. So, even though its following beta image was not installed, the old version was a live. If what I remember is right, in 3.x versions of iOS, I installed beta 2 and didn’t did so with beta 3 and after official public version was announced, I updated it to the public version. There was no problem in using the iPhone/iPod touch with the beta 2.
However, yesterday, my iPhone suddenly displayed “Activation Needed” message. I was mostly out of my home, so I didn’t know if new version was released on Jan. 26th, which was Saturday.
Then when I came back home, my iTunes didn’t display “Check for Update” and “Restore iPhone…” buttons. So, although I downloaded the latest beta image, I couldn’t update my phone. My iPhone just became bricked.

Who are leading Apple’s development and SQA teams nowadays? After iPhone got popular, I started to feel their quality of work degraded gradually. I understood that they lacked in their work force. I’ve heard that only finger-countable number of people worked on Xcode, while at MS about 250 people work on Visual Studio. I know that many good people in Mac OS X team wanted to move over to iPhone team. So, I expected such lower quality job. However, I believed Apple people. They will cease urgent fire and will be back to normal mode. However, it turned out they didn’t.
I file bugs to Apple’s bug report pages. Some are easily noticeable problems.
Even though some are beta, their internal SQA team should test things thoroughly and publish to developer community. The outside developers are not their SQA team. Although we test their S/W programs, the main focus is different. I’m not saying that their S/W programs should be perfect. They are also human. They can do mistake. However, I feel that their quality degraded seriously compared how they were before. Well, if we call it nicely, it’s social SQA.

I, personally, do three steps of testing of my own code.
While implementing, I frequently debug what I implemented to make sure if it works as I designed. Then when I finish implementation, I debug it to see if it works as a whole first, and do another test to see if it breaks any related features. Then I hand-over to SQA team.
So, there has been no bugs once they left my hands. I’m not saying that I’m always perfect. However, I at least try to ensure what I do. If there is only things I don’t test thoroughly although I implemented is some features of which designed behavior is not yet set by people who requested it. So, it’s kind of rough implementation to the point which can be ground for whatever they ask for the feature.
I don’t want to say some “great-sound” terminology like “Test-Driven Development”
Even we don’t use such term, that is common sense.

(Strangely, since 2000, people in this field just invent some nice-terminology to mean the same old thing. It looks to me that they try to impress other business background people or some S/W programmers who don’t have background in CS in a way that they know a lot or they are professionals. However, you know what? Although that can help office politics or impress during hiring process, actually those people who make things work are those who have those knowledge melted into their habit, so can’t even spend their time to learn those terminologies.)

Let’s look at what Apple announces. Xcode, Mac OS X, iOS.. they contain lots of bugs which are very easily visible.
Where are those Apple’s unique integrity, and perfectionism?
It’s not Steve Jobs they lost. It’s those integrity and perfectionism.

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