Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Interesting title of Web seminar, Practical Testing and Evolution: An Enterprise-wide Automation Framework

not sure on how practical or objective the suggested approach will be. Have seen an earlier framework from them that was nice.

Web seminar by ThoughtWorks test automation experts Jeff Rogers and Kristan Vingrys provide guiding principles for developing long-term automation strategies including what to automate, setting reasonable automation strategies and goals, and how to evolve your test suites over time. .............sounds interesting.
Practical Testing and Evolution: An Enterprise-wide Automation Framework.....Title
Test automation efforts that stumble and die are most often the result of misconceived perceptions of the effort and resources necessary to implement a successful, long-lasting automation framework. ......what's new ?
In this event, you will also learn: ....sounds interesting
  • Automation strategies by product and organizational, enterprise-wide tactics to get your automation efforts to live beyond a single project
  • Driving automation early and having artifacts live on continuously–from genesis through development and beyond support and maintenance
  • Using automation to get quick feedback on the viability of the product

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Comedy of errors !!

Sometime back myself and Ajay had a chat ... and how can acronyms confuse one is a classy example here !! These sections are highlighted in blue.

Ajay: Hi Meeta,

me: hi

Ajay: you prefer twitter or gmail chat or nothing (considering the time)
me: btw i hv been planning to sleep since 10 pm but been consistently on

Ajay: That's the power of ET discussions I would say

me: u bet

Ajay: why do you think managers need details of a process? They are afraid that they do not know what the tester is doing?

me: nah ! they do not know what they or their team is doing. They do not have competency in most of the cases to understand what is rightly done and what is not hence the approach

Ajay: "a document which has been passed on by seniors and told that this would work in most cases" something like that?why is there a gap b/w good tester and a good manager?

me: kind of low self confidence is another reason, bad technical skills is yet another. There is never a gap between a good tester and a good manager

Ajay: is it true that testers with bad tech skills are promoted to management faster than good testers?

me: gap will be there only between a good tester and a bad manager

Ajay: If you can't be replaced, you can't be promoted stuff
me: nah !promotion in product companies is due to your skills. Mostly promotion in service industry is due to your buttering skills

Ajay: good to know why is your smiley not animated?on google talk or Gmail?

Ajay: How come iPhone testing?

me: no idea, why it does not get animated ...test it out

Ajay: so I asked: are you on Gmail or Google talk?

me: iphone- generally has been interesting me for sometime

Ajay: which browser and which version ok

me: IE7gmail

Ajay: ok let me try to simulate it

Ajay: Check from IE 6

me: cant revert using office laptop

Ajay: no no don't

me: sab band ho jaayega if i change any settings

Ajay: XP, Vista?

me: n i'll hv to spend whole of tomm with my ccd guy XP

Ajay: you have chrome installed?

me: not allowed
Ajay: could you please try once with chrome oh ok

oh ok ccd? why ccd? no office?

me: they'll immediately block my official mbox if i download n install any thing directly. ccd is our customer connection division. They take care of our hardware

Ajay: ROFL

me: whats that now ?

Ajay: Cafe Coffee Day

me: mujhe laga tha

Ajay: Rolling on Floor Laughing

me: tum yahi soch rahe hoge isiliye acronyms se door rehne ko kehte hain what is AFD btw ? Ajay: once in my Engineering interview, the external guide asked me do you know ATM- Away from Desk?I said Yes and was kind of shocked that he would give his ATM card and password and ask me to withdraw money

me: ok, gives me a new topic for blog

Ajay: and then realized that he was talking about Adobe Type Manager

Monday, November 23, 2009

New Video on BBST

Found a new video on BBST by Cem posted on 7 Nov 09. I don't remember seeing it before. If you have not yet seen it, catch it on the link

talks about - "To know how to serve the project well, we have to understand the project, its stakeholders, and their interests."

KT Scripting our thinking caps ?

Today Srini sent a tweet


@mheusser What is the deal about Skill Transfer (ST)? It sounds like a data transfer through an USB jump drive !!! In IT we call it as KT


made me think how seriously or casually we take the information gathering .......the sole reason being we do it so often ? or we are bored doing it so often ?

I liked his term "data transfer". It so aptly fits into the mechanical act of sharing information.

The whole building of the "testing castle" lies on this foundation of "KT".

"KT" not only helps us understand the objective to build into test, but also expectations for which tests have to be written.......but indirectly does it "script" our thought process ? ......are we still ready to explore and experiment more exhaustively ? ....... are we thinking more than what is feeded into us ? ......... are we asking sufficient questions beyond what is provided to us as information ? ..................??????

Worrying makes you cross the bridge before you come to it

Nice Article, recently read.
Tester's read the qs inbetween carefully. Can you relate it someplace ?
Worrying makes you cross the bridge before you come to it !!
------------- By Harvey Mackay

Recently I saw a survey that says 40 percent of the things we worry about never happen, 30 percent are in the past and can't be helped, 12 percent concern the affairs of others that aren't our business, 10 percent are about sickness--either real or imagined-- and 8 percent are worth worrying about. I would submit that even the 8 percent aren't really worth the energy of worry. Did you know that the English word worry is derived from an Anglo-Saxon word that means to strangle or to choke? That's easy to believe. People do literally worry themselves to death. . . or heart disease, high blood pressure, ulcers, nervous disorders and all sorts of other nasty conditions. Is it worth it? Some folks seem to think this is a '90s phenomenon, but I've got news for you: advice about worry goes back as far as the Bible. We didn't invent it. We just need to find a way to keep it from ruling our lives. I've been spending a lot of time in bookstores lately, in the middle of a 35-city book tour. From one coast to the other, north to south, some of the most popular self-help books concern worry, stress, and simplifying your life. I have a couple of favorite books to recommend. First, an oldie. Dale Carnegie's "How To Stop Worrying and Start Living." It was first published in 1948, but the advice is just as fresh and valuable as it was then and is right-on for the new millennium. Being a chronic list maker, I found two sections that really knocked my socks off. Both were about business people trying to solve problems without the added burden of worrying. Carnegie credits Willis H. Carrier, whose name appears on most of our air conditioners, with these silver bullets: Analyze the situation honestly and figure out what is the worst possible thing that could happen. Prepare yourself mentally to accept the worst, if necessary. Then calmly try to improve upon the worst, which you have already agreed mentally to accept. Bingo! You can handle anything now. You know what you have to do; it's just a matter of doing it. Without worrying. Another approach I like is a system put into practice at a large publishing company by an executive, named Leon. He was sick and tired of boring and unproductive meetings marked by excessive hand-wringing. He enforced a rule that everyone who wished to present a problem to him first had to submit a memo answering these four questions:
What's the problem?
What's the cause of the problem?
What are all possible solutions to the problem?
Which solution do you suggest?
Leon rarely has to deal with problems anymore, and he doesn't worry about them. He's found that his associates have used the system to find workable solutions without tying up hours in useless meetings. He estimates that he has eliminated three-fourths of his meeting time and has improved his productivity, health and happiness. Is he just passing the buck? Of course not! He's paying those folks to do their jobs, and he's giving them great training at decision-making. Another little gem that's made its way to a #1 New York Times bestseller is Richard Carlson's "Don't Sweat the Small Stuff, and it's all small stuff." Of course, being an aphorism junkie and slave to short snappy chapters, I've found this book can improve perspective in 100 small doses. I love the chapter titles: "Repeat to Yourself, 'Life Isn't an Emergency,'" "Practice Ignoring Negative Thoughts," and my favorite, "Let Go of the Idea that Gentle, Relaxed People Can't Be Super achievers." The point is, you can't saw sawdust. A day of worry is more exhausting than a day of work. People get so busy worrying about yesterday or tomorrow, they forget about today. And today is what you have to work with. I remember the story of the fighter who, after taking the full count in a late round of a brawl, finally came to in the dressing room. As his head cleared and he realized what had happened, he said to his manager: "Boy, did I have him worried. He thought he killed me." Now that's putting the worry where it belongs.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Do You Spell Testing?A Mnemonic to Jump-Start Exploratory TestingBy James Bach

This is a very interesting post from James Blog. Replicting here for easy read. You can check original directly at*Z(SM)*J(MIXED)*R(relevance)*K(simplesite)*F(A+mnemonic+to+jump+start+testing)*&sidx=0&sopp=10&sitewide.asp?sid=1&sqry=*Z(SM)*J(MIXED)*R(relevance)*K(simplesite)*F(A+mnemonic+to+jump+start+testing)*&sidx=0&sopp=10


Do You Spell Testing?A Mnemonic to Jump-Start Exploratory TestingBy James Bach

In exploratory testing, we design and execute tests in real time. But how do we organize our minds so that we think of worthwhile tests? One way is through the use of heuristics and mnemonics. A heuristic is “a rule of thumb, simplification, or educated guess.” For example, the idea of looking under a welcome mat to find a key is a heuristic. A mnemonic, by contrast, is a “word, rhyme, or other memory aid used to associate a complex or lengthy set of information with something that is simple and easy to remember.” Heuristics and mnemonics go together very well to help us solve problems under pressure. SFDPO Spells Testing A mnemonic and heuristic I use a lot in testing is “San Francisco Depot,” or SFDPO. These letters stand for Structure, Function, Data, Platform, and Operations. Each word represents a different aspect of a software product. By thinking of the product from each of those points of view, I think of many interesting tests. So, when I’m asked to test something I haven’t seen before, I say “San Francisco Depot” to myself, recite each of the five product element categories and begin thinking of what I will test. Structure (what the product is): What files does it have? Do I know anything about how it was built? Is it one program or many? What physical material comes with it? Can I test it module by module? Function (what the product does): What are its functions? What kind of error handling does it do? What kind of user interface does it have? Does it do anything that is not visible to the user? How does it interface with the operating system? Data (what it processes): What kinds of input does it process? What does its output look like? What kinds of modes or states can it be in? Does it come packaged with preset data? Is any of its input sensitive to timing or sequencing? Platform (what it depends upon): What operating systems does it run on? Does the environment have to be configured in any special way? Does it depend on third-party components? Operations (how it will be used): Who will use it? Where and how will they use it? What will they use it for? Are there certain things that users are more likely to do? Is there user data we could get to help make the tests more realistic? Bringing Ideas to Light I can get ideas about any product more quickly by using little tricks like SFDPO. But it isn’t just speed I like, it’s reliability. Before I discovered SFDPO, I could think of a lot of ideas for tests, but I felt those ideas were random and scattered. I had no way of assessing the completeness of my analysis. Now that I have memorized these heuristics and mnemonics, I know that I still may forget to test something, but at least I have systematically visited the major aspects of the product. I now have heuristics for everything from test techniques to quality criteria. Just because you know something doesn’t mean you’ll remember it when the need arises. SFDPO is not a template or a test plan, it’s just a way to bring important ideas into your conscious mind while you’re testing. It’s part of your intellectual toolkit. The key thing if you want to become an excellent and reliable exploratory tester is to begin collecting and creating an inventory of heuristics that work for you. Meanwhile, remember that there is no wisdom in heuristics. The wisdom is in you. Heuristics wake you up to ideas, like a sort of cognitive alarm clock, but can’t tell you for sure what the right course of action is here and now. That’s where skill and experience come in. Good testing is a subtle craft. You should have good tools for the job.

Ever Scrabbled ?

This has got to be one of the most innovative junk e -mails I've received in a while.
Someone out there either has too much spare time or is deadly at Scrabble. (Wait till you see the last one)!

Tester's what say ??

  1. DILIP VENGSARKAR When you rearrange the letters: SPARKLING DRIVE
  2. PRINCESS DIANA When you rearrange the letters: END IS A CAR SPIN
  3. MONICA LEWINSKY When you rearrange the letters: NICE SILKY WOMAN
  4. DORMITORY: When you rearrange the letters: DIRTY ROOM
  5. ASTRONOMER: When you rearrange the letters: MOON STARER
  6. DESPERATION: When you rearrange the letters: A ROPE ENDS IT
  7. THE EYES: When you rearrange the letters: THEY SEE
  8. A DECIMAL POINT: When you rearrange the letters: IM A DOT IN PLACE
    MOTHER-IN-LAW: When you rearrange the letters: WOMAN HITLER

Easy Tips on Art of Writing Better

One of my new friends in testing space asked me to review a small piece of writing.
The gap in the work was setting the symphony between words and sentences and the sync of all the words. I was missing the harmony from the orchestra.
Thought will pen a few quick key tips for our new friends experimenting with writing that have been my learning's in this space.
Here you go ....
  • Chuck the thought what others will think on your writing out of window. People will think what they want to and you will come to know of it only once they read it and give their comments. Give them a chance to speak for you to improve. You need critics towards building success.

Learning - Don't Assume. Believe in what you see.

  • Ask a question "WHY" behind every word and sentence and see if you are able to visualize it from what you have written. You need to "script" readers thought process. "Why, What and How " are most important.

Learning- your reader does not get lost trying to assume / interpret things while reading your work.

  • Don't contradict yourself through the work. Its a catch.

Learning - leaves a bad impression on the reader about you

  • Know your vocabulary well. Do not experiment with words if you do not understand them in depth. The simpler words you choose, more audience you get.

Learning - Let the reader understand what you want to say easily.

  • Don't assume and build perception around things that you do not know basics and facts about. If you have an idea, bounce it as an idea. If you have a learning, bounce it as a learning. If it is a new approach you have thought of, let it go as that.

Learning- Clarity solves many a problems and misconceptions.

  • Do not be influenced with others to such an extent that you loose novelty in whatyou wanted to write. Easy way that I have found to handle it is, first write you ideas on a piece of paper. then start to read about other's ideas/ opinions. Document what you feel is relevant on another piece of paper. Compare both notes. Now with relevant credits document what you feel is your novel ideation.

Learning - Research well. Give due credits. Be ethical.

Remember - Think about WHY’s the person who reads it will ask after reading what u want to write.

Welcome to the world of effective articulation !!

Experience of a job seeker !!

Been talking to a friend .....he quit working with a service company giant in India and started on his own recently.
While the business was slow due to recession, he thought to appear for some interviews....
He says" if business does not help, I used to go to interviews very often and tell people that I came out of "XXX" to start business I never got offers.......when I told them I got chucked out they offer me ..." :)

Irony of this job space !!

Performance measurement analyst role and responsibilities

  • Recently read ....Performance measurement analyst role and responsibilities
    By Lior Arussy, President, Strativity Group

    What are the main job functions of a performance measurement analyst? How is the person in this role responsible for the customer experience?
    Customer experience success is highly dependent on measuring what matters the most to customers. From establishing the right measures to linking them to real results, a performance measurement analyst needs to be fully aware of what the customer experience is about and how to measure it and make the results actionable.
    The roles and responsibilities will include:
  • Identify key customer measurements for the whole organization
  • Identify customer experience measures per touch point
  • Determine frequency and scope of measurements
  • Link measurement results to actual customer spend to justify investment
  • Link customer measurements to operational measurements to enable change
  • Track changes and improvements

Gartner's top 10 strategic technologies for 2010

If you have not yet read ...

Plan your test strategeis and competancy upgrades.

Gartner's top 10 strategic technologies for 2010
By Anne McCrory, Editorial Director22 Oct 2009
ORLANDO, FLA. -- Gartner Inc. released its top 10 strategic technologies for 2010 this week, a list that paints a picture of an agile, mobile, secure enterprise where advanced analytics and social media identify early warning signs of failure and predict emerging business trends.
That vision was further extolled in numerous sessions at the annual Gartner Symposium/ ITxpo, where the research firm's executives described the past year as possibly the worst ever for IT. "Trust declined more dramatically in the past year than ever before," Gartner CEO Gene Hall said in his opening remarks.
Though IT budgets won't increase at many organizations, Gartner predicted a 3.3% growth rate for IT spending next year, plus a shift from capital to operating expenditures as "IT costs become scalable and elastic with the business," said Peter Sondergaard, senior vice president of research.
The top 10 strategic technologies list, proffered annually by David Cearley and Carl Claunch, wasn't the only such list offered up at the event. Sondergaard offered a list of nine focus areas based on an analysis of what people are searching for on Gartner's website. The top tier: Cost management, which will continue to be a top issue for 2010 but will encompass risk and growth as well; cloud computing, which will move from the discussion phase to small pilots; and process optimization around enterprise applications (ERP, customer relationship management, supply chain management) that will allow organizations to get more out of these investments.
His second tier included business intelligence; virtualization, as organizations create the foundation of a cloud infrastructure and move from owned to shared assets; and social media. The latter isn't just for so-called digital natives but also for "silver surfers," those over 60 who will become the most important segment in the next 10 years, he said.
The top 10 strategic technologies for 2010
Cearley and Claunch's list focuses on technologies that have the "potential for significant impact on the enterprise during the next three years." Some have fallen off the list from past years because companies should have already incorporated them into their plans (like service-oriented architecture or master data management), their adoption has slowed (unified communications) or there won't be market shifts warranting inclusion on the 2010 list (specialized systems and servers beyond blades). Others have come back in new forms: virtualization, which topped the 2009 list, is now embedded in several wider areas as well as standing on its own for a specific usage.
Here, then, is the list for 2010:
Gartner's 2009 list
The top 10 strategic technologies for 2009 were as follows:1. Virtualization2. Business intelligence3. Cloud computing4. Green IT5. Unified communications6. Social software and social networking7. Web-oriented architecture8. Enterprise mashups9. Specialized systems10. Servers -- beyond blades
1. Cloud computing. Organizations should think about how to approach the cloud in terms of using cloud services, developing cloud-based applications and implementing private cloud computing environments. "Everything will be available as a service," Cearley said. "That doesn't mean you use it all [or] move it all there."
2. Advanced analytics. Real-time data analysis will enable fraud detection on one hand and prediction and simulation on the other, as organizations use data to look ahead.
3. Client computing. Enterprises need to develop a five- to eight-year client computing roadmap before making near-term decisions such as whether or how to upgrade client hardware or move to Windows 7. The progression of desktop virtualization technology and the range of devices available make this an important analysis. "Build a strategic client computing roadmap bringing all issues and devices together, or you will be following vendor roadmaps," Cearley said.
4. IT for green. The "green" concept has moved beyond energy-efficient data centers to using IT to enable green throughout the enterprise. For example, an organization could use IT to analyze and optimize shipping of goods.
5. Reshaping the data center. A flexible "pod" model, where data center sections can be independently heated, cooled and powered, allows the organization to light up new sections only when needed.
6. Social computing. Organizations need to examine the use of social media by both internal and external constituents and figure out how to govern it. Social network analysis can be used both to detect fraud and to change business processes to boost internal efficiency.
7. Security -- activity monitoring. As targeted attacks rise and cloud computing adds complexity, organizations need to identify a longer-term plan for how all of their security technologies come together. Security incident and event management devices, for example, are one approach that is becoming mainstream.
8. Flash memory. This technology, made ubiquitous by popular USB sticks, is a faster, although more expensive, storage alternative. Price drops mean it will offer a "new layer of the storage hierarchy in servers and client computers," Gartner said.
9. Virtualization for availability. Live migration technology such as VMware Inc.'s VMotion will enable the use of virtualization for high performance, possibly displacing failover cluster software and even fault-tolerant hardware.
10. Mobile applications. Mobile is at a tipping point, given the proliferation of handheld devices and their power and storage.

Requirements and testing

"Requirements and testing" .........below mentioned points are from Richard Bender's approach

Writing Testable Requirements - Deliver requirements that are concise, accurate, modular, and highly testable.
Requirements-Based Testing - Identify important ambiguities in requirements specifications before coding starts.
Mastering the Requirements Process – Learn the complete process of eliciting and writing testable requirements.
Requirements Modeling – Understand how to find and verify requirements with models.
Essential Software Requirements – Use powerful techniques for identifying, documenting, and verifying requirements, including formal Plan-Driven and Agile requirements approaches.
Extending Requirements - Extend the foundations laid in the “Mastering the Requirements Process” course by learning how to choose the best set of requirements to give you a competitive edge and still get your product to market on time.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

What categories of tools we should be looking for while thinking the tester way ?

What makes sense for a tester to have an extended support in terms of tools ........

Questions to ask -

  • do we really need them ?
  • will they help me perform better in this situation ?
  • are these tools scripting ideas & inputs ?
  • are they able to "think" cognitively like you and me ?
  • can they really unearth bugs ?
  • will they increase my productivity ?

Specific to Automation tools

  • Are they able to let me explore the inputs ?
  • am I experimenting while doing testing ?
  • can I make them work they way I'd want them to work ?
  • Are they actually doing what I wanted them to do while executing a script ?

Checkers .........Testers ??

Think tanks .........where are you ??????
This was the question I asked, while I sat through Rapid testing class with Michael Bolton as my instructor ............on Nov 17 & 18 2009 ............
It made me realize how mundane our daily activities have become ........ what are our customers primarily focussed on .......... what are we primarily focussed on ..................?????????
Cutomers - test cases that pass or fail .......success criteria .....pass ;
We - how many pass test cases go from my desk.......
Sadly ........the focus is no where exploratory most of the times ......:(

Metrics is the BUZZ word all many times are we measuring and awarding the maximum bugs identified ?
Lets make the change and do it .......... Let exploratory minds think !!

Wake up time ......... !!

Amazing Energy Group !

Weekend Testers !!

Attended STC on 19 Nov 09 ........and you should have been there to hear from Ajay B on the thought wave called "Weekend Testers" ...........what a redention of thoughts !! was a housefull and had a standing ovation from many including Michael Bolton !!

Great Going Folks !!

Lets be the leaders towards making the change the world needs ........."THINKING TESTERS" !!

Learning's from Michael's Rapid Testing class

...................................... yet to scribe

Thanks Parimala :)

While I am at this page, how can I not thank Parimala ......... who asked me a simple question ......why have I stopped blogging ??

and will definitely like to thank her....... coz that statement made me open this page and realize how quick time passes by ........and that did not let this become my new year resolution ;)

Come back !! Wake up time !

I never realized that it has been more than a year that I published something on this page :)

Attended a Rapid Testing workshop with Michael Bolton in Bangalore on 17 & 18 Nov 09.........and was I amazed at his class handling ?? .......

.......All that could be said was WOW !! ..............this is the way to engage the class ........ perfect one !!

and how can I NOT blog about this .........

Thanks Michael !!
  • for opportunity to learn from you .....
  • for teaching us the differentiator of good testors ......... "checkers and Tester"
  • for "food for thought" bouncers
  • and for waking me up and bringing me back to this world :)