Tech Journalists have a negative effect on Public Beta Testing of Software

Every year we have the Tech Journalists throw out their template posts about how you shouldn’t beta test and that beta testing only for those that are experienced blah blah blah…

…then they go on to produce numerous posts extolling the various features that they are trying out using the “Developer Beta” of an OS or Application but it’s mostly the newer versions of the Apple iOS, macOS and Google Android OS.

 

They have a set cycle.

1. Tell you not to install the beta’s

Yeah, they literally say it’s okay for them but not for you because they are ‘tech experts’.

They will go into details about why you shouldn’t, the “You phone might malfunction and  zap your brain with radiation” type of reasons.

2. Write many many articles extolling the many new features that they just loooooooooooooooove using.

Even though the public beta is not available they will download the most unstable versions of the OS just so they can extol the featuresm even going as far as glossing over when features are not working correctly and if a developer posts that they couldn’t have used that feature because it is not working they delete that developers comment erasing from all to see and banning the developer from commenting.

Yeah, many articles were written for features that are not working even after the public beta arrived, probably because developers are lousy at reporting bugs they find and the beta for them is really so they can get their Apps working with the OS ready for launch day.

In fact this is the reason that Apple and Google and even Microsoft have taken to having public beta testing of their operating systems, because the Public actually use the operating far more fully than the developers or the tech journalists writing about the new features.

3. Public Beta Arrives, they then tell everyone again not to install Beta’s.

Like a broken fucking record!

4. They give detailed, step by step instructions on how to sign up for the Public Beta Test program and install the Beta.

Yeah after telling everyone twice not to install the beta’s they then tell everyone how to do it.

In fact they do this twice, because they have the Gall to tell the developers how to install the beta’s of the OS’s onto their devices like they are experts and the developers are just dumb schmucks.

5. They then go on about the same features they extolled previously.

Yeah it’s like they are writing for multiple audiences and that these audiences phase in and out of existence.

Funnily at no time do they even sound like they have ever come across an issue and they live in hunky dory fun land where beta’s are perfect without bugs.

6. After waiting 24 hours they issue their cookie cutter instructions on how to go back to the stable version of the OS that is in general release.

Yeah it’s like a broken record, but it makes it look like they are writing even if it is the same post that has been used for several years with the OS versions updated, well sometimes not updated as the case has been proven because the writer is too damn lazy to check their work.

7. Now when every new version of the beta is releases they will go through the same Shampoo like instructions,  announce the update being available, instructions to download and instructions to roll back to the stable public version of the OS.

Yeah but at no time have to pointed out that bugs that they had reported have shown to have been fixed, oh yeah, that’s because they live in Cloud Fucking Cuckoo Land of the Beta being perfect because they don’t actually look for bugs like they should have been doing.

Tech bloggers and journalists don’t realize that the point of the beta’s is to hunt down the bugs and make them known so that there is less chance, when the OS becomes Gold Master, of the OS having major issues that cause chaos which was a problem that Apple had repeatedly when Beta’s were only open to developers and journalists would pay for a developer account just so they could do steps 1 through 7.

Why public beta’s are more important than the developer beta.

I’ve already mentioned that developers are less likely to report a bug, unless that bug affects their personal projects.  Tech Jounalists also don’t really care about reporting bugs, they just don’t see it as a big deal.

How many times did Apple suffer the embarrassment of some pretty blatant and major bugs being in a public release, a Gold Master, of an OS version because the feature was not used by developers and the problem was not spotted until the public started using the operating and suddenly things wouldn’t work.

In fact with one version a tech journalist would sit on a podcast panel and whine about a ”Springboard” crashing issue as if it was new to him after having the public beta on a phone from the launch of he Beta after WWDC until the public “stable” gold master version was issued after the launch of the latest iPhone model I believe the iPhone 4S or iPhone 5.

The whole time he was writing about the new features in the OS and never once mentioned the issue.

This issue was fixed pretty fast when it became obvious that it was a problem caused when the phone was used by a normal person for every day use rather than a developer making sure their apps worked with the new version of the of OS.

These days the issues that arise after the OS goes to Gold Master tends to problems that are obscure and arise only when certain circumstances arise or an app is used that a developer has chosen not to maintain.

 

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