Highly witnessed activity

Where the image of core programmer in the western world is that of a solitary alienated figure to the world, in the Indian context the building of software is a highly witnessed activity within the formal hierarchy of companies and projects.

Being physically seen at work, even if one is doing other things at the computer or just lingering, is believed to be very important to establish reputation as a trustworthy and good worker. When a programmer has to fix a bug, he will get other team members involved so he does not have to take the responsibility of possibly making a mistake. It becomes a collective responsibility. It is not because people are not individualistic; it is because people do not want to take responsibility for the mistake. The trustworthiness is broad because of the physical presence of the workers and because the work is defined as a group activity. The entire trust is based on this, as became apparent in Ilavarasan’s research.