First, try getting away from the computer for a few minutes. Computers emit waves that affect the brain, causing these symptoms:
- Frustration and rage.
- Superstitious beliefs (“the computer hates me”) and magical thinking (“the program only works when I wear my hat backward”).
- Random walk programming (the attempt to program by writing every possible program and choosing the one that does the right thing).
If you find yourself suffering from any of these symptoms, get up and go for a walk. When you are calm, think about the program. What is it doing? What are some possible causes of that behavior? When was the last time you had a working program, and what did you do next?
Sometimes it just takes time to find a bug. I often find bugs when I am away from the computer and let my mind wander. Some of the best places to find bugs are trains, showers, and in bed, just before you fall asleep.