Marián Mirilovič, Quality Engineering Manager

The success of a software development project can be measured in many ways. But certainly one of the most important metrics for the users of open source software, is the quality of the software itself. And so it is fitting that the second interview in the series of NetBeans team interviews introduces Marián Mirilovič, NetBeans Quality Engineering Manager.

Marián Mirilovič at Edinburgh Castle, Scotland
Marián Mirilovič at Edinburgh Castle, Scotland

Hermien Pellissier: How long have you been a part of the NetBeans team?

Marián Mirilovič: Actually I was hired into the original NetBeans team (before it was bought by Sun Microsystems) in July 1999, but just a few days before my start date I got call-up and I was forced to spend one year in a Slovak Army base camp. Fortunately I got another offer from the team just before the end of my duty, so my official start point is November 2000. Wow… looking at the date now, it is almost 13 years and most of them unforgettable (especially those at Sun Microsystems).

HP: What is your role in the team?

MM: My actual position is “NetBeans Quality Engineering Manager”. So beside leading the QE team, I am also the one responsible for the final quality of the product, setting expectations in quality area for new releases and getting buy-in to new Quality Criteria by the Development team (the toughest part of my job).

HP: What is a typical work day like for you?

MM: It depends on the phase of the release cycle. But more or less I start with reading emails as we are an international company, and most of my colleagues work in different time-zones, so I usually get replies during my nights. Emails usually give me an updated picture what the status is, if there is a blocker for my team to continue in the activity we are currently working on. When everything goes well, I check the dashboard and go through high-priority bugs reported since my last check. Continue with meetings and tasks connected with the phase of the release cycle we are working on that day. Just before leaving office I do check the dashboard, what was the income in a day and other stats.

HP: When is the Quality Engineering team at its busiest?

MM: The whole season ;). Actually, there are a couple days after releasing new version when we have “a free time”, but after a day or two we start to work on a first patch, so there are almost no down-times.

HP: Which aspect of your job do you enjoy the most, and why?

MM: There are three peaks for me ;). The first one is when we complete testing of a new version and I am proud to send “GO” for a release.

The second is when we are getting replies to our “Thanks for your contribution to the NetBeans X.Y” emails and people thank us for a great IDE and appreciate the work we’d done during the whole release cycle.

And the last one is when we send recognition awards to the most active NetCAT participants. Actually this is usually the last task on the checklist for particular release. 😉

HP: What are your other interests?

MM: First of all my children. I have a four and a half year old daughter and a seven year old son. Both are very active and require a lot of attention. 😉

The other important thing in my life is sport. I play ice-hockey, beach volleyball, and I like jogging in summer and skiing in winter.

HP: What is your favourite holiday destination?

MM: We are used to spending our summer holidays on one of the Greek Islands. The other usual place is the area under High Tatras in Slovakia (my birthplace) and the last one is Lake Lipno in the Czech Republic.

HP: What is your favourite show or movie?

MM: I like the Sci-Fi genre and movies about history. I have read plenty of Isaac Asimov and Arthur C. Clarke’s books. There are a lot of movies I like. The first two that come to my mind just because I saw them recently are “Invictus” and “Moneyball”.

HP: Are there any blogs (NetBeans related or otherwise) that you would recommend?

MM: I like Geertjan’s Blog ( and I strongly recommend reading it. Also NetBeans’ PHP blog ( is pretty active and keeps our huge PHP community updated.

HP: Thank you for the interview!

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