Need someone to lead product or development at your software company? I lead product and engineering teams and I'm looking for my next opportunity. Check out my resume and get in touch.

Test data mishap

Freshness Warning
This article is over 15 years old. It's possible that the information you read below isn't current.

Make sure your developers use test data that’s clean and wouldn’t embarass your company if it accidentally slips out to the public. Otherwise you might end up with something like this.

Target.com Product detail page for 'Marijuana'

Update: Apparently this isn’t a test data problem. It’s a problem with not enough product details and the way the ecommerce system’s back end works. The item in question is a book that Amazon carries, but Amazon has no details on the book. Since Target.com is managed by Amazon, many of the products sold by Amazon can be forced to show in the Target.com design; just tack the ASIN from Amazon onto the Target URL. For instance, you buy Isaac Mizrahi cashmere gloves from Target.com even though your local Target isn’t going to carry this item.

When the book is shown on Amazon, it’s obvious that Amazon is selling a book entitled “Marijuana,” but when shown through Target’s interface it just looks like they’re selling pot.

Serge K. Keller
November 26, 2004 12:26 AM

But there's even worse on that site! See http://www.meyerweb.com/eric/thoughts/2004/11/22/targets-backdoor-sale/ for (gory) details...

Trackback from Amanita.net
November 28, 2004 9:14 AM

links for 2004-11-28

Excerpt: Test Data Mishap So how much pot are they selling for $25? (categories: corporate funny) Science Textbook Disclaimers Wow, scary. But hey, it beats...

Kenneth Norton
November 28, 2004 11:55 AM

It's a real book, not test data. From Amazon's site you can see the ISBN number: 0823916839. Lots of merchants sell the hardcover version: http://shopping.yahoo.com/p:Marijuana:1976247212:isbn=0823930076

Chloe
November 28, 2004 3:43 PM

The first incident was funny, I'll grant... But now it's just old news. The first thing that comes to mind is that certain people are deliberately looking for things that slipped through target.com's weakness there, just to play the joke for all it's worth. Thanks for the rather rational explanation, even though I doubt it'll quell the enthusiasm for people who are still getting a rise out of the topic. haha. I doubt it seems particularly embarrassing to Target anyway, actually. After all, people constantly make fun of Wal-Mart for all sorts of reasons, and they like the attention, good or bad. hah! Perhaps Target is different, but I somehow doubt it.

Trackback from smart brother
December 3, 2004 12:57 PM

I didn't know they legalized it already.

Excerpt: Test data mishap :: Adam Kalsey Track

This discussion has been closed.

Recently Written

A framework for onboarding new employees (May 15)
There’s no single good way to onboard an employee that works for every role. Here's a framework for creating a process that you can adapt to each situation.
TV hosts as a guide for software managers (May 10)
Software managers can learn a lot from journalists or late night TV hosts and how they interview people.
The Improvement Flywheel (Apr 29)
An incredible flywheel for the improvement of a development team. Fix a few things, and everything starts getting better.
Managers and technical ability (Dec 26)
In technical fields, the closer you are to the actual work being done, the closer your skills need to resemble those of the people doing the work.
Dysfunctions of output-oriented software teams (Sep 17)
Whatever you call it, the symptom is that you're measuring your progress by how much you build and deliver instead of measuring success by the amount of customer value you create.
Evaluative and generative product development (Aug 30)
Customers never even talk to the companies that don't fit their needs at all. If the only product ideas you're considering are those that meet the needs of your current customers, then you're only going to find new customers that look exactly like your current customers.
Product Manager Career Ladder (Aug 19)
What are the steps along the product management career path?
Building the Customer-Informed Product (Aug 15)
Strong products aren't composed of a list of features dictated by customers. They are guided by strong visions, and the execution of that vision is the primary focus of product development.

Older...

What I'm Reading

Contact

Adam Kalsey

+1 916 600 2497

Resume

Public Key

© 1999-2020 Adam Kalsey.