(from the printf()
function in C
) Used to describe debugging
work done by inserting commands that output more or less carefully chose status
information at key points in the program flow
, observing that information and deducing what's wrong, based on that information.
Usually considered amateurish and inferior to the use of a real debugger, but has the advantage that it is always a workable option, e.g. when there is no (or no free, or no working) debugger available. Also, it offers greater flexibility than the limited interface of a debugger. The downside is that it usually takes longer (sometimes much longer) to pinpoint the problem.