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Software Debugging

Free Course

Automating the Boring Tasks

Related Nanodegree Program

Introduction to Programming

About this course

In this class you will learn how to debug programs systematically, how to automate the debugging process and build several automated debugging tools in Python.

What you will learn

  1. How Debuggers work
    • Theory: Scientific method and its application to debugging.
    • Fun fact: First bug in the history of computer science.
    • Practice: Building a simple tracer.
  2. Asserting Expectations
    • Theory: Assertions in testing and in debugging.
    • Fun fact: The most expensive bug in history.
    • Practice: Improving the tracer.
  3. Simplifying Failures
    • Theory: Strategy of simplifying failures. Binary search. Delta debugging principle.
    • Fun fact: Mozilla bugathon.
    • Practice: Building a delta debugger.
  4. Tracking Origins
    • Theory: Cause-effect chain. Deduction. Dependencies. Slices.
    • Fun fact: Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson.
    • Practice: Improving the delta debugger.
  5. Reproducing Failures
    • Theory: Types of bugs (Bohr bug, Heisenbug, Mandelbug, Schrodinbug). Systematic reproduction process.
    • Fun fact: Mad laptop bug.
    • Practice: Building a statistic debugging tool.
  6. Learning from Mistakes
    • Theory: Bug database management. Classifying bugs. Bug maps. Learning from mistakes.
    • Fun fact: Programmer with the most buggy code.
    • Practice: Improving your tools and practicing on a real world bug database.

Prerequisites and requirements

Basic knowledge of programming and Python at the level of Udacity CS101 or better is required. Basic understanding of Object-oriented programming is helpful.

See the Technology Requirements for using Udacity.

Why take this course?

At the end of this course you will have a solid understanding about systematic debugging, will know how to automate debugging and will have built several functional debugging tools in Python.

Learn with the best.

  • Andreas Zeller
    Andreas Zeller


  • Gundega Dekena
    Gundega Dekena