When I was still a child, I could not have a new toy without starting to find out how I could get inside and find out how it was built. It was often distracting me away from the intended use of the toy.
I was annoyingly courious! I don’t know when it started, but I know that I have never found a cure for it. I played with LEGO’s a lot – I think that satisfied my constructive instinct – but couriosity was always there: I dismantled mechanical and electronic toys, the old alarm clock, vacuum tube radios, loudspeakers, computers…
Couriosity can lead to new knowledge or to destruction – or both. I didn’t always find out how things worked. For example, a vacuum tube does not itself reveal how it works like a gear and a spring can do. So my couriosity was sometimes not really satisfied. That didn’t turn me down, however. I kept on taking things apart!
I’ve “sharpened my pencil” a lot since then and now have a much better understanding of product development and how to use my couriosity in a way that is not destructive at all, but usually very constructive. I am a professional tester and I’m able to quickly and effeciently discover facts about new things that nobody knew about (some of these facts are called “bugs”). My job is to pipe those facts back to the developers who can use them to improve the software they are responsible for.
That’s what a tester does. Whether you’re “natural born” or has discovered the techniques later in life isn’t important. Couriosity is important!