Arkisto: February 2014

How to Draw an Owl

17. Februaryta, 2014 | Kirjoittaja: Antti Niittyviita

Test training, literature, seminars and blogs all share great tips to handling testing the right way. All of us besserwissers are plagued by the following problem. Our instructions look like this:

Most people can draw those two circles. But they are not the key to success. Drawing requires thousands of tiny decisions, which all are based in one question.

What does the owl really look like?

It is not a very practical thing to draw the owl, if you cannot see it through your mind’s eye. The same rings true with testing. The world is full of tips and teachings regarding how the testing should be handled.

Draw two circles.

Before any instruction works, you first need to see. You need to see how functional testing actually looks like. How does it feel?

Then how does one really learn to draw the damn owl?

Like with all things in life. You start with a circle and after that you draw, erase, redraw, erase once more a little bit, then draw some more. There is no shortcut to learning.

Testaus 2010 Seminar Was Agile

17. Februaryta, 2014 | Kirjoittaja: Antti Niittyviita

I like seminars. One meets new people and the speeches usually manage to rouse lots of good ideas. I am writing about this, because last week I attended the Testaus 2010 seminar in Helsinki’s Tieturi. The event was definitely worth it and the speakers top of their line. In the event, they also chose the tester of the year Tero Jyrinki from Endero. Congratulations Tero for a job well done!

From the seminar programme’s presentations, most ideas were inspired by Logica’s Bob Verhoeff in his risk-based testing talk and Qentinel’s Katja Kuusikumpu’s presentation on choosing the metres for testing. These subjects will be talked about in the future issues of this blog. Order a feed right now!

But let’s cut to the chase. Again, there was a repeated case in the theme of the seminar about agile testing: “Are there shortcuts for agile testing?”, “Taking up agile testing and its phases”, “Agile testing in real life”. Agile is obviously trendy, you hear about it in every seminar. Agile is everywhere. Agile, agile, agile.

Phew. Despite agile, people usually want testing to produce solid yet believable data on the project. Like Katja in the seminar said, testing has to be able to produce accurate metrics on the project’s advancement, on the quality of the final result and even on money. How on earth can these subjects be measured extensively, if we remind ourselves about:

  • Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
  • Working software over comprehensive documentation
  • Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
  • Responding to change over following a plan

Doesn’t measuring stuff especially require at least good processes and functioning tools? Doesn’t measuring stuff require good documentation and on top of it a hint of organized planning? Quite a dilemma to investigate, I say. It is easy to talk about and easy to demand. And it does work sometimes.

Before the next project, one needs to state that STOP, take a breather and think:

Not everything goes into the same equation. If you demand real agility from your team, it happens in the expense of at least metrics.