Archive for the ‘Training’ category

Hey Testers, Communicate the Value of Testing

June 15, 2007

It’s almost a month since my last post on this blog and busy with my upcoming release of QuickRules BRMS. I have been talking to the people around on the Software Testing and felt that it’s not communicated well. Though there is enough information on this subject, i would like to describe my own version of the same here.

 

Testing is about making things better by providing constructive criticism based on the context (we can also say qualitative information and not being nice) at the right time and in the right direction too.

I like the phrase, “Testers, you are the headlights of the project” from the book Lessons Learned in Software Testing.

I have been thinking about this concept helped for the individuals. This revealed lot of crucial information and i hope this helps my fellow testers to motivate them & their teams.

There are many real life testers (incase if we need to list all of them) who contributed & still contributing a lot for us in every phase of life to grow and improve upon (fix the imp bugs among ourselves).Let’s explore some of them below.

My Parents are the first testers in my life. They contributed invaluable information at each stage (Milestone release) of my life. Instead of saying “Sshhhhhh you can’t do that, they used to tell me further implications that might arise”. An insight into this tells us that it’s not an order, but there is context based information for informed decisions.This helped me to stop for a while, analyze the information and work on the required steps to improve upon the current state.

My teachers helped me a lot by providing the constant feedback (just not being nice) through assignments, tests and covey the areas which are good and bad for me in the respective subjects. They are the best testers because they are the ones who taught the concepts and observed my execution towards the same.

There is a tremendous scope for the improvement, incase if we have acted upon the feedback at the right times.

My Boss at work used to evaluate (Test the Tester) me & provide the feedback on the tasks performed by me. This information helps to analyze to identify the next set of steps to be taken for the improvement.

If we look back, there are many testers around us providing the qualitative information to make things better and improve upon.

The Value of this information is tremendous since it came from people who are more experienced and passed through the current stage where we stand. The value lies in the fact that most of the successful people around, learnt a lot from others (learn from others mistakes too rather than your own) and they have become experts in their own fields.

How does this helps Software Testing

Software testing too comes under the similar lines and its role is to provide context driven information for the stake holders to make informed decisions over the application under test (AUT).

So as being testers, we need to provide the constructive criticism at each stage of the Development. If we look back at the above scenarios, the value addition is more because the people involved there have better skills over the context.

That being said, the current industry lacks skilled testers. The true value addition in Software Testing will be more, if and only if the people involved there have better skills over the context they working with.

Do share your views here or send them to me at venkatreddyc@gmail.com

Happy Testing…

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Non Reproducible Bugs – How to deal with them ?

May 7, 2007

Last week, i had reviewed the bug reports submitted by my team & found that some of them are not reproducible. I am curious about where things went wrong & checked with the team.

Some of the Responses:

  • Look Venkat, this bug is not-producible always. So we have captured the log.

  • It does occur if we re-start the application

  • It takes good amount of time for the investigation

As a Tester, i have come across of situations where some bugs won’t reproducible again and i infer that many of the testers might have gone through the same episode atleast once.

But then, Non-Reproducible Bugs are errors of the testers even though we may not agree. More over this is true for Technical Support & Testing functions.

It’s tough for the Developers to work with such bugs and testers used to get lot of objections over such bugs. If the count is more, then it might spoil the relationships between testers and developers.

An Insight

I infer from my experiences that systems doesn’t have the powers of human brain. It’s tough to repeat the same mistake again from people since they are conscious. Systems doesn’t have that much capability interms of thinking and they do perform the sequence in which they have coded for. 

How do deal with Non Producible Issues

Testers need to improve their skills inorder to reproduce such issues. The following might be a help.

  • Try to capture the story around the issue and not just steps.

  • Capture the complete Test Enviroment

  • Capture all the available Test Execution Results. This includes your test data, screen shots, applications logs, system logs, server logs

  • Need more patience (they won’t occur easily)

  • Need more observation skills on the application behavior under test.

  • Narrate the story around the issue to the stake holders and to corner the issue.

  • Resources & Time Contraints might be an issue (More true for Tech Support). Bargain for the same

Conclusion

They are bound to take lot of time & resources in the process. It’s suggested to reproduce each & every issue. We must explore more for the critical issues & re-produce them asap. In the process, we learn more too.  

Happy Testing.

Software Testing Courses and Certifications

May 4, 2007

My friend Mallikarjun of Code Inspections compiled a list of  Software Testing Courses &  Certifications available in the Universities and some professional certifications around the world on testing.

This is useful information for Testers and that’s the reason for this post.

Some more useful resources to explore on software Testing are listed below.

Hope this helps to explore more on the Testing Front for the new comers as well as the experienced ones.

Happy Testing.

Testing Magazines

March 14, 2007

Testing Magazines helps us to know the latest trends / happenings around the industry. These will list the methodologies, tools, techniques, expert talks and some of the best practices that are useful to the testing community.

Through this post, I would like to list the magazines that are useful. I have been following through the below list of magazines since a while and these does helped a lot.

Software Test and Performance from BZ Media

Brought to you by BZ Media LLC, Software Test & Performance helps readers improve the efficiency of their software QA and testing processes, as well as help them improve the performance of their in-house applications pre- and post-deployment.

Better Software from StickyMinds.

Better Software is the magazine for software professionals who care about quality. Each issue brings you relevant, timely information to help you build better software. Continuing to deliver in-depth articles on testing, tools, defect tracking, metrics, and management, it’s the only commercial magazine exclusively dedicated to software professionals. Within the pages of each issue you’ll find heavy hitting articles about solutions to common management problems, coverage on emerging technologies, and more. You’ll benefit from expert analysis and real-world case studies in the areas of Testing & Analysis, Managing People & Teams, and Tools & Techniques.

Methods & Tools

This is a free magazine with PDF and text issues that provide practical knowledge and information on all topics of software development and software engineering: UML, Agile Methodologies (eXtreme Programming, Scrum, TDD, FDD,..), Software Testing, Software Configuration Management, Database Modeling, Java, .NET, RUP, Software Project Planning and Management, Test Automation, Programming, Software Analysis and Design, Quality Assurance, Software Process Assessment and Improvement, Software Development Tools, Risk Management, Refactoring, IT News, etc.

The Professional Tester

Professional Tester is the leading publication targeting professional testers of software worldwide. It is a 32-page, English-language quarterly magazine with a circulation of approximately 15,000 subscribers and is now in its sixth year of publication. Subscription is free to qualifying industry professionals. Professional Tester is completely vendor-independent and is currently the only European publication covering the rapidly growing software testing market.

The Tester from Specialist Group in Software Testing

WINNER of the BCS Best Specialist Groups Magazine award!. The Tester is the newsletter of the SIGIST. It is published a few weeks before each conference and contains advanced details of the conference as well as a booking form.


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