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Showing posts from June, 2022

If Only We New

  If only we knew ... When our testing is essentially the same eyes looking through the same lens at the same thing in the same context in same way over and again then we are limiting the extent to which we can learn about our product. If we aspire to know more, then we should use different eyes and different lenses and look in different ways at different aspects of the system under test in different scenarios. Easy to say, of course. But how to do ? Engage with what's happening elsewhere in our teams, in other teams, in our companies, in our domains, in the tech our companies use, in the testing community and industry, and in other areas relevant to our contexts. If only we new ...  We will find people, tooling, approaches, or knowledge that could help us do a better job. We will make opportunities to try those new things and invest in the ones that look promising.  We will find that what we knew wasn't as much as we thought. Image:

The Love of a List and a Loop

I attended Maaret Pyhäjärvi 's Intro to Contemporary Exploratory Testing webinar for Codementor this week.  In it, she demonstrated exploration with automation on  Alan Richardson 's E-Prime checker web site using Playwright  to provide control and visibility of the page and  PyUnit  to make assertions about its state. Nothing unusual there, you might say. There are probably millions of test suites with a similar setup running right now in companies all over the world. And you're right. What's different about this approach is what Maaret did with the tooling, and why. She created a simple skeleton test case, parameterised it to take an input and expected output, and interactively called it with test cases from a list.  What she had now was a lightweight testing rig where: Adding a new test idea is adding a new item to the list. A note, bug report, or to-do is a comment above an item in the list. Variant ideas can be created quickly and easily with copy-paste.  Code c

Risk-Based Testing Averse

  Joep Schuurkes started a thread on Twitter last week. What are the alternatives to risk-based testing? I listed a few activities that I thought we might agree were testing but not explicitly driven by a risk evaluation (with a light edit to take later discussion into account): Directed. Someone asks for something to be explored. Unthinking. Run the same scripted test cases we always do, regardless of the context. Sympathetic. Looking at something to understand it, before thinking about risks explicitly. In the thread , Stu Crook challenged these, suggesting that there must be some concern behind the activities. To Stu, the writing's on the wall for risk-based testing as a term because ... Everything is risk based, the question is, what risks are you going to optimise for? And I see this perspective but it reminds me that, as so often, there is a granularity tax in c

Sunk Costs

  The Association for Software Testing is crowd-sourcing a book, Navigating the World as a Context-Driven Tester , which aims to provide responses to common questions and statements about testing from a context-driven perspective . It's being edited by Lee Hawkins who is posing questions on Twitter ,  LinkedIn ,  Slack , and the AST mailing list and then collating the replies, focusing on practice over theory. I've decided to contribute by answering briefly, and without a lot of editing or crafting, by imagining that I'm speaking to someone in software development who's acting in good faith, cares about their work and mine, but doesn't have much visibility of what testing can be. Perhaps you'd like to join me?   --00-- "Why didn’t you find those issues before we shipped?" Assuming that's an unloaded request for information, I'd say that your answer will lie somewhere in here: we

Laughing at Failure

At last night's qbox network meetup , in a talk titled Try not to Laugh: Fail Compilation of a Tester, Anssi Lehtelä recounted tales of accidents, wrong behaviour, and unwanted outcomes. To be honest, I didn't try too hard not to laugh. But who can keep keep a straight face when hearing about profane login credentials, automatically generated by concatenating a few characters from customer first names and last names? Not me. But why am I laughing? In part, for sure, it's because it violates an expectation about vendor-customer relationships. Imagine being welcomed into a shop by someone saying "ah, hello Mr Shit."  OK, yes, I'm also chuckling a little because rude words out of context can just be funny. But mostly I'm laughing the laughter of recognition. How could they have missed that possibility? Could I have missed that possibility? Have I ever missed a possibility? Hmm ... yes. Ooops! Anssi's stories covered test data escaping into production an