Heuristic for when you get confused

James Bach gave me a sample application to test. It had some field interactions and some not so intuitive features. After a few minutes of testing, I started to have a hard time coming up with test cases. I was confused.

James offered the following heuristic:

  1. Are you confused?

  2. Do you want to be confused?

  3. If you don't want to be confused then:

    • return to a known state

    • resolve to make more precise observations

    • work with one factor at a time (or OFAAT)

Later I actually saw him use this heuristic on a problem I gave him. It worked.

OFAAT is something I have decided I need more practice with. It's a simple principle, but hard to make yourself do. At least it is for me...