Everything

Test is a four letter word

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When you hear the word ‘test’, what does that mean to you? (If you just said ‘it depends’, congratulations, you’ve earned your ‘consultant’s answer to everything’ badge). When folks who aren’t career software testers use the word ‘test’, it frequently comes with a raft of associations that are decidedly different to what many software testers […]

Everything

You probably need fewer testers than you think

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I have noticed that companies have a tendency to conflate software quality problems with software testing problems. This sometimes leads to a knee-jerk reaction to conclude ‘we need more testers’ or ‘we need better automation’.  The net result is hiring more software testers than you actually need. Software quality suffers for all sorts of reasons. […]

Uncategorized

Software Development Team Dynamics Revisited

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I’ve been thinking a lot recently about how teams interact and particularly where they fall down and why. What follows is a model that illustrates how I’ve observed high-performing teams interrelate when producing software, as well as causes for different kinds of intra-team dysfunction.  The outer circle represents the constraints a given team has accepted at […]

Software Testing

On skills and roles in software development – automation

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A recent blog post from Alan Page prompted an interesting subsequent twitter conversation In Alan’s blog, he writes: Automation works wonderfully for short confirmatory or validation tests. Unit, functional, acceptance, integration tests, and all other “short” tests lend themselves very well to automation. But I think it’s wasteful and inefficient to have testers write this […]

Everything

Retrofitting Cucumber to an existing codebase

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The new job (well, not so new now, but in any case my latest job) uses quite a bit of tech I’d not dug into previously. As far as source control goes, I’m used to centralised SC like SVN (or even CVS in a pinch), so getting my head around a distributed model (Git) took […]

Everything

The Software Tester’s Dictionary

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For those of you who weren’t at CAST2010 and maybe aren’t so acquainted with some of the things the Association for Software Testers is up to, you might be interested to learn that Cem Kaner is heading up a special interest group to create a dictionary of terms relevant to software testing. For those people […]

Everything

Life is too short to do a job you loathe

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I’ve been busy lately. In a good way, at long last. I recently started at a new company and have been flat out getting acquainted with how the new place is put together. I have to say – I am loving the new role. I know when I turn up that before the day is […]