A Guide to Software Revisions
Once you start playing with software you quickly become aware that each software
package has a revision code attached to it. It is obvious that this revision code gives
the sequence of changes to the product, but in reality there's substantially more
information available through the rev code than that. This e-mail provides a guide for
interpreting the meaning of the revision codes and what they actually signify.
Also known as "one point uh-oh", or "barely out of beta". We had to
release because the lab guys had reached a point of exhaustion and the marketing guys were
in a cold sweat of terror. We're praying that you'll find it more functional than, say, a
computer virus and that its operation has some resemblance to that specified in the
We fixed all the killer bugs ...
Uh, we introduced a few new bugs fixing the killer bugs and so we had to fix them, too.
We did the product we really wanted to do to begin with. Mind you, it's really not what
the customer needs yet, but we're working on it.
Well, not surprisingly, we broke some things in making major changes so we had to fix
them. But we did a really good job of testing this time, so we don't think we introduced
any new bugs while we were fixing these bugs.
Uh, sorry, one slipped through. One lousy typo error and you won't believe how much
trouble it caused!
Some jerk found a deep-seated bug that's been there since 1.0 and wouldn't stop nagging
until we fixed it!!
Hey, we finally think we've got it right! Most of the customers are really happy with
Of course, we did break a few little things.
More features. It's doubled in size now, by the way, and you'll need to get more memory
and a faster processor ...
Just one or two bugs this time ... Honest!
We really need to go on to a new product, but we have an installed base out there to
protect. We're cutting the staffing after this.
We had to fix a few things we broke in 5.0. Not very many, but it's been so long since
we looked at this thing we might as well call it a major upgrade. Oh, yeah, we added a few
flashy cosmetic features so we could justify the major upgrade number.
Since I'm leaving the company and I'm the last guy left in the lab who works on the
product, I wanted to make sure that all the changes I've made are incorporated before I
go. I added some cute demos, too, since I was getting pretty bored back here in my dark
little corner (I kept complaining about the lighting but they wouldn't do anything).
They're talking about obsolescence planning but they'll try to keep selling it for as long
as there's a buck or two to be made. I'm leaving the bits in as good a shape as I can in
case somebody has to tweak them, but it'll be sheer luck if no one loses them.