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Rubber Duck Debugging

Duck debugging, also known as rubber duck debugging, is a powerful technique that helps engineers solve problems.

What’s with all the ducks? Visitors to the Cyber Defense Center in Kansas City often ask that question. Students, vendors, and customers who tour the Engineering Department spy the yellow, pink, and purple ducks (some sporting dark sunglasses) displayed prominently on desktops, window ledges, and more. And they wonder, what’s the quacking deal?

Duck debugging, also known as rubber duck debugging, is a powerful technique that helps engineers solve problems and debug code by explaining their work to a rubber duck. The process of verbalizing the problem and walking through the code step by step allows engineers to gain a deeper understanding and often leads to the discovery of errors or inefficiencies. 

The key benefit of duck debugging is that it forces engineers to slow down and think critically about their code. By articulating their thoughts, they can identify issues they might have otherwise overlooked. Additionally, duck debugging doesn’t require a second person, making it a convenient and time-saving method to uncover and fix problems in code.

Rubber Duck Debugging demonstrates the creative problem solving executed daily by the Cyderes Engineering team. Where did it start? The engineering classic “The Pragmatic Programmer” features an engineer who debugs his code by forcing himself to recite his code line by line to a rubber duck. 

Ever notice how problems seem to solve themselves when you talk through them with a friend or loved one? When you explain something, it sometimes reveals the fallacies or thaws in your logic. Slowing down, switching languages (from coding to spoken), and describing what supposed to be happening versus what’s actually happening all helps get Cyderes engineers closer to resolution. That’s the value of Rubber Duck Debugging. 

Our engineers and security analysts are relentlessly dedicated to innovation. Just like our partners at Splunk, Google, and more, we are constantly upgrading the software we employ for our customers. Let us know how our innovators can work for you by saving costs, enhancing visibility, and securing your business. We’ll bring the ducks!

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