Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Cambridge Lean Coffee

This month's Lean Coffee was hosted by Redgate. Here's some brief, aggregated comments and questions  on topics covered by the group I was in.

What benefit would pair testing give me?

  • I want to get my team away from scripted test cases and I think that pairing could help.
  • What do testers get out of it? How does it improve the product?
  • It encourages a different approach.
  • It lets your mind run free.
  • It can bring your team closer together.
  • It can increase the skills across the test group.
  • It can spread knowledge between teams.
  • You could use the cases as jumping-off points.
  • I am currently pairing with a senior tester on two approaches at the same time: functional and performance.
  • For pairing to work well, you need to know each other, to have a relationship.
  • There are different pairing approaches.
  • How long should you pair for?
  • We turned three hour solo sessions into 40 minute pair sessions.
  • You can learn a lot, e.g. new perspectives, short-cuts, tips.
  • Why not pair with developers?

Do you have a default first test? What it is? Why?

  • Ask what's in the build, ask what the expectation is.
  • A meta test: check that what you have in front of you is the right thing to test.
  • It changes over time; often you might be biased by recent bugs, events, reading etc to do a particular thing.
  • Make a mind map.
  • A meta test: inspect the context; what does it make sense to do here?
  • A pathetic test: just explore the software without challenging it. Allow it to demonstrate itself to you.
  • Check that the problem that is fixed in this build can be reproduced in an earlier build.

How do you tell your testing story to your team?

  • Is it a report, at the whiteboard, slides, a diagram, ...?
  • Great to hear it called a story, many people talk about a report, an output etc.
  • Some people just want a yes or no; a ship or not.
  • I like the RST approach to the content: what you did, what you found, the values and risks.
  • Start writing your story early; it helps to keep you on track and review what you've done
  • Writing is like pairing with yourself!
  • In TDD, the tests are the story.

One thing that would turn you off a job advert? One thing that would make you interested?

  • Off: a list of skills (I prefer a story around the role).
  • Off: needing a degree.
  • Interested: the impression that there's challenge in the role and unknowns in the tasks.
  • The advert is never like the job!
  • Interested: describes what you would be working on.
  • Off: "you will help guarantee quality".
  • Interested: learning opportunities.
  • Interested: that it's just outside of my comfort zone.

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