Tag Archives: errors

Don't Write Insulting Error Messages

Error messages are incredibly important in communicating to the user when something happened that the program was not designed to handle.  Programmers usually write these messages, and there are common pitfalls to avoid.

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Is Non-existence an Error?

You call a method to retrieve information about an object with a  particular ID, but the record does not exist.  Is this an exception?   Or not?  It is hard to answer.

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Two Kinds of Exceptions

An exception is a message from the system to the user about something that the program can not handle. There are a couple of main categories of exceptions: environmental and program logic. They warrant quite different treatment.

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Error messages should be very literal

We all struggle with the correct wording for error messages. It is not easy. But I ran across an example today that should help understanding

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Error-First Design in JSON/REST/AngularJS integration

You have heard about “mobile-first” when creating your UI, but there is something you should do before you start designing the UI:  you should design the error handling/display mechanism first.

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"Oops something failed" is NOT acceptable error message

I try to keep track of real-life situations where poor error messages appear. That happened again today. This message was displayed to the user:

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Robust Web Application Initialization

When a web based application starts up, it should do so carefully to avoid a number of problems.  This post outlines the problems you might run into, and a list of coding preparations that can be made to avoid these … Continue reading

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Error Message should be clear, plain, and direct

This post is about a real error message I received and puzzled through.  Luckily, because I was working with open source code, I was able to see a copy of the source, and only then did I understand what the … Continue reading

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Surprising outrageous file handling

I don’t usually focus on bad examples of code (because there are so many ways to do it wrong they are rarely repeated) but here I found a particular pattern that was pernicious and repeated all through the code, indicating … Continue reading

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Usability Means Not Jumping Through Hoops

The image of being forced to jump through hoops is one of being required to take arbitrary actions in arbitrary orders just to satisfy some goals that are either unseen or at least not in the interest of the user. … Continue reading

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