9
nosoup4u
137d

Got one right now, no idea if it’s the “most” unrealistic, because I’ve been doing this for a while now.

Until recently, I was rewriting a very old, very brittle legacy codebase - we’re talking garbage code from two generations of complete dumbfucks, and hands down the most awful codebase I’ve ever seen. The code itself is quite difficult to describe without seeing it for yourself, but it was written over a period of about a decade by a certifiably insane person, and then maintained and arguably made much worse by a try-hard moron whose only success was making things exponentially harder for his successor to comprehend and maintain. No documentation whatsoever either. One small example of just how fucking stupid these guys were - every function is wrapped in a try catch with an empty catch, variables are declared and redeclared ten times, but never used. Hard coded credentials, hard coded widths and sizes, weird shit like the entire application 500ing if you move a button to another part of the page, or change its width by a pixel, unsanitized inputs, you name it, if it’s a textbook fuck up, it’s in there, and then some.

Because the code is so damn old as well (MySQL 8.0, C#4, and ASP.NET 3), and utterly eschews the vaguest tenets of structured, organized programming - I decided after a month of a disproportionate effort:success ratio, to just extract the SQL queries, sanitize them, and create a new back end and front end that would jointly get things where they need to be, and most importantly, make the application secure, stable, and maintainable. I’m the only developer, but one of the senior employees wrote most of the SQL queries, so I asked for his help in extracting them, to save time. He basically refused, and then told me to make my peace with God if I missed that deadline. Very helpful.

I was making really good time on it too, nearly complete after 60 days of working on it, along with supporting and maintaining the dumpster fire that is the legacy application. Suddenly my phone rings, and I’m told that management wants me to implement a payment processing feature on the site, and because I’ve been so effective at fixing problems thus far, they want to see it inside of a week. I am surprised, because I’ve been regularly communicating my progress and immediate focus to management, so I explain that I might be able to ship the feature by end of Q1, because rather than shoehorn the processor onto the decrepit piece of shit legacy app, it would be far better to just include it in the replacement. I add that PCI compliance is another matter that we must account for, and so there’s not a great chance of shipping this in a week. They tell me that I have a month to do it…and then the Marketing person asks to see my progress and ends up bitching about everything, despite the front end being a pixel perfect reproduction. Despite my making everything mobile responsive, iframe free, secure and encrypted, fast, and void of unpredictable behaviors. I tell her that this is what I was asked to do, and that there should have been no surprises at all, especially since I’ve been sending out weekly updates via email. I guess it needed more suck? But either way, fuck me and my two months of hard work. I mean really, no ego, I made a true enterprise grade app for them.

Short version, I stopped working on the rebuild, and I’m nearly done writing the payment processor as a microservice that I’ll just embed as an iframe, since the legacy build is full of those anyway, and I’m being asked to make bricks without straw. I’m probably glossing over a lot of finer points here too, just because it’s been such an epic of disappointment. The deadline is coming up, and I’m definitely going to make it, now that I have accordingly reduced the scope of work, but this whole thing has just totally pissed me off, and left a bad taste about the organization.

Comments
  • 6
    One more note about the legacy codebase, can’t believe I forgot - it’s not version controlled, unless you count the copied files, .cs.bak.dev21 arbitrary extensions to denote “versioning”. It’s about 175GB of spaghetti.

    I’m trying to quit drinking, and this is definitely not making it easier.
  • 2
    May the spirits guide you...
  • 0
    What a surprise ending. I wasn't expecting that.
  • 1
    @electrineer the ending surprised you? Which part, or did I miss some sarcasm?
  • 1
    @nosoup4u I expected you to quit for a better job and the company to blow up completely.
  • 1
    @electrineer I’m trying not to be a total fuckass about this, plus a reference in hand trumps a burnt bridge every time. I like fixing things, they just won’t let me damn it. But no, the company is going to survive, pharmaceuticals, and I should not say more than that.
  • 0
    Why are you still there. This shit will kill your sanity.
  • 1
    @ars1 eventually, you’re correct. But I’ve been through some shit man, I can handle this for a little while until I find something new. Looking back at my old rants on here, I used to get bent out of shape over some really small, pedantic, and pointless shit.
  • 0
    Ooof. You poor thing. I can add that Marketing people are the WORST. I loathe working with them.
  • 1
    Marketing people aren't real. They're a shared delusion that Satan had bestowed upon us
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