As a software tester, I am often criticized by developers when I highlight typos in their application. I take the slings and arrows of being called “nit-picky” and “obsessive” well, but two recent stories in the news bring home the fact that, indeed, it is the little things that count.
It was splashed across the front page of the Metro section of the December 1, 2010 edition of The Washington Post that it is now perfectly legal (and has been for over thrity years) to drive past a stopped school bus that is either picking up or dropping off children.
Courtesy of a dropped word, “at”, Section 46.2-859 of the 2006 Virginia Code reads:
A person is guilty of reckless driving who fails to stop, when approaching from any direction, any school bus which is stopped on any highway…
Yep, it’s okay to drive by a stopped school bus – it’s only illegal to fail to stop a stopped bus.
Item number Two comes from the halls of Congress. This story, also from the Post, documents how a food safety bill (S 510, The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act) was in danger of being scuttled because the Senate added an amendment which would have imposed a fee on importers. The problem with that amendment is that a fee is akin to a tax and Article I, Section 7 of the United States Constitution states that:
All bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives…
So now the bill has to go back to the House to be passed (which it was) and then it has to go back to the Senate again.
Sometime a second pair of eyes isn’t being obsessive, it just good sense.