Software Failure Report 2014 Entertainment Edition

Software failures

Software Failures of 2014: Entertainment Edition

For the everyday consumer, realizing how much software touches our daily lives is akin to waking up in the Matrix. The long list of complex operations we take for granted has only grown as society has become accustomed to having a smart phone in hand at all times.  The degree to which we interact with software on a daily basis however, only underscores the importance of that software working properly.That is when, as a business, accurate and efficient testing of critical software applications becomes an ace up the sleeve.
At Tricentis, we believe so strongly in the power of software testing that we have built our entire enterprise around the idea. It turns out that you don’t have to look too far to find evidence to back up our philosophy – 2014 was full of stories of software break downs and their repercussions. So far we have looked at stories from the Finance, Government, and Transportation sectors; today we discuss the Entertainment industry.

Software, in the form of apps and social media, has significantly altered the landscape of the entertainment industry. From social media apps like Twitter to casinos running their games on intricately calibrated programs, software extends to touch nearly all forms of entertainment. In the case of video roulette software breaking down however, a nightmare scenario for the casino becomes a plot line worthy of a Hollywood blockbuster.

Online Gaming Company Accidentally Targets Compulsive Gamblers Due to Software Error

Caesars Entertainment, an American based online gaming and entertainment company, was fined $10,000 after accidentally sending promotional emails to a list of known compulsive gamblers. Over 250 self-proclaimed compulsive gamblers had signed a do-not-send list to be exempted from emails and ads that might spark their addiction. Unfortunately for these well-intentioned people, the glitch in the software resulted in Caesars Entertainment targeting exactly the people trying to avoid the temptation.


 2000 Character SMS is Discovered to Consistently Crash What’s App

A group of Indian research students discovered yet another flaw in the universally popular What’s App messaging application this past December. According to the students, a simple 2000 character SMS message will cause the application to not just quit, but continuing quitting until the entire message history is deleted. While for most it is a harmless way to prank their friends, for others the method can be used to effectively force-delete messages on a remote phone.


Grand Prix Engine Software Problem Spoils Competitor’s Hopes of Victory

Competitors from both the Australian and Singaporean Grand Prix lost out on hopes for victory due to software malfunctions in their vehicles. In Australia, reigning Formula 1 world Champion Sebastian Vettel reported that his racecar was lacking in sufficient power to perform well in the race. Renault later confirmed that this was the case, and the car software needed to be updated. Meanwhile in Sinagpore, Grand Prix hopeful Kimi Raikkonen experienced similar problems, citing a software glitch that sabotaged what could have been his strongest run to date.

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Slot Machine Software Glitch Results in $100,000 Payout

Hundreds of casino slot machines were discreetly replaced in British Columbia after a machine malfunctioned and gave at $100,000 payout to one lucky woman. The slot machines, which were designed to cap at $1000, were reported to contain a software error that allowed for unprecedented winnings under the correct, “very rare” circumstances. The casino opted to pay the woman her displayed winnings, choosing to recover their losses from the slot machine game maker instead.


Twitter Crashes for Second Time in 9 Days

Considering that Twitter is populated by over 250 million users, it is no surprise that the software infrastructure can get overloaded. Unfortunately for Twitter however, that does not mean their users are going to be understanding when the popular social media service crashed for the second time within 9 days this past March. Though the service was interrupted for less than an hour both times, the damage was reflected in the stock price – an additional blow to Twitter after they had invested heavily in enhancing their site dependability.


Thieves Clean Out Casino by Leveraging Faulty Video Roulette Software

A coordinated team of thieves cleaned out hundreds of casinos across Germany by leveraging a software bug in the video roulette games this past February. According to news reports, the video roulette software would dispense money when the numbers 1-9-3-6 were pressed and the lever pulled. The news article speculates that the insider knowledge may have been sold to the thieves over the internet. As a result, some casinos lost over €100,000 in one night, though the software game makers may be held liable for the damages.


More on Software Failures

Software Failures of 2014: Finance Edition

Software Failures of 2014: Government Edition

Software Failures of 2014: Transportation Edition

Software Failures of 2014: Entertainment Edition

Software Failures of 2014: Retail Edition

Software Failures of 2014: Service Edition

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