The scariest moments in mobile dev. Halloween special

High demand, high salaries and all the fun and perks companies are offering, software developers seem to be the kings of the world. While all this looks pretty neat, the truth is that like with any other job, being a software developer also has its downsides. And some of them are scarier than others, to the point of cold sweat and skipping a heartbeat.

With Halloween around the corner, it’s suitable to bring out the most horrific moments in the life of a mobile app developer. We have selected these blood-freezing moments based on comments from real developers in online discussion forums. These are our 10 most frustrating bits and bites that can make software developers scream and pull their hair out.

#1 Managers

One of the scariest creatures of them all. Scheduling meetings and asking the most irrelevant questions with the most unsuitable timing. Meet the Managers. Although bustling around for a good cause and bugging the developers for good reasons, they often break the perfect flow of things, and losing good development time will drive you nuts.

Ain’t nobody got time for meetings.


Management doesn’t understand the “cost” of task shift, so always thinks that their “emergency” item can be switched to, worked on for the 2 days you say it will take, and it won’t add any time to the overall estimate because “it was in the plan already” – Brian Engelhardt

Managers want time estimates quite in advance. Programming is not typing. They do not understand that programming sometimes involves creative thinking and needs ideas. We cannot really estimate time for that. They want everything to be completed by “yesterday”. – Rambabu Thota


# 2 Writing tests

Writing code and bringing ideas to life is the sweet part of a developer’s life. However, there’s no sunshine without testing the code. Even the most carefully crafted code is going to contain bugs if you don’t implement a proper test suit. Also, debugging can lead to many lost hours and waste of good development time, not to mention losing your sanity.

When you write such big programs that while debugging you forget what the bug was.

# 3 Documentation

Another pain in the arse is documentation. Nobody likes to spend time on documenting what’s going on, and it gets worse when meeting others’ poorly documented code. It simply gives you gray hair if you have to debug, enhance or integrate code that is poorly documented and you have to figure out how it works by yourself.

It’s just bad for programmers’ blood pressure.

When you’re facing code written by others that is poorly documented.

This especially applies if the programmer who created the solution did not document it and another programmer had to make a documentation for the solution. – Kevin Sekin

They expect us to understand just by looking at the code – which most of the time doesn’t have comments too.  –  Rambabu Thota

# 4 Deadlines

We are sure every developer has experienced the bittersweet anxiety of deadlines.

Managers (yep, these creatures again) are promising the world to the customers, and in the end, it’s the developers that have to deliver it. Although you may be most productive when working under the pressure of deadlines, the situation can create a lot of stress and result in heavy cursing.

# 5 Integration hell

Being able to work simultaneously on a single code base is the beauty of mobile app development. You write your code and merge it to the main repository. Then there’s this blood-freezing moment of uncertainty: is the main repository going to stay fit, up and running? You definitely don’t want to spend hours on debugging these mysterious bugs lurking around in your code (or in other’s code)…


via GIPHY When your part of the code is crashing because somebody changed theirs

# 6 Hardware

You have an amazing new mobile application and you can’t wait to release it! You build your code and try to find all the bugs in there. And here comes the bummer. There are more than n devices out there, all with their own specifics! This can easily make your head spin!

When “have you tried to turn it on and off again” is just not working.

# 7 Deployment

You are finally ready to release your code. Wouldn’t you love to just hit deploy, run and never face the results? Although it can be scary, deployment is the moment of truth. According to this survey, only 16% of clients are willing to give a buggy app a second chance. So, deploying a buggy app can soon turn into a costly nightmare and turn you into an insomniac.

# 8 Code signing

Aghhhh! Where do we even start?

When coding and debugging was the easy part and then comes the Apple store and code signing. via GIPHY 

# 9 You never stop learning

This really is not a scary moment. In general, developers are pretty curious creatures and solving puzzles is what they do. The only way to get better at programming is to actually program — write code, make mistakes and find solutions. However, sometimes it would be really neat to actually know the answers and save a smack on your forehead.

When you find your own answer on StackOverflow to the problem you are facing now.

Fuck, sometimes 6 days later. Or even 6 hours if it’s particularly bad code. – Sasken

When I wrote it, only god and I knew the meaning; now only God knows. – Merosi


# 10 Making it to the app store…second

At some point in their lives, every mobile app developer has probably dreamt of becoming rich, or at least successful, with their ingenious app idea. After some euphoric coding, you push your app to the app store and see yourself making that first million in your mind’s eye, only to discover that someone else has done the same thing first! While this can cause some serious despair, it might not be that bad at all, honestly. You better read what to do if your app idea already exists.