A Testers Guide To the Galaxy

A Testers Guide To the Galaxy

Who am I to write this blog?

I've been in the testing game for app. 12 years now and in the agile game for more then 14 years, started out as a part time tester in internal test projects, moved on to a role as full time tester doing automation, took my ISEB foundation, moved on the consulting world, now as test coordinator, became part of an agile project, added certified SCRUM Master to my CV, got my ISTQB ATM exam, moved on to role as Test Manager. Recently I have moved more and more into the agile game, adding CAT Certified Agile Tester, ISTQB CTFL Agile Tester Extension and SAFe Agilist to the list of certifications. So now I act more as a trainer (CAT, ISTQB CTFL & CTFL AT) and agile coach!

I simply want to share my thoughts on agile and testing and all thats connected with it.
Feel free to comment on my thoughts!

AgileTestingDays day 3 - Highlights

ConferencesPosted by Søren Wassard Mon, November 17, 2014 12:15:14

Don’t put me in a box

Seems that the hot topic this year is soft skills, something that I emphasize!

Anthony talks about not limiting our self by a title, for instance “tester”.

It was a very inspiring talk with examples of his life experience on how he went outside the box, and to do something different he had no supporting slides :o) – just a man on a stage with a microphone!

He gave us a lot of different examples. One of them was from Special Forces. He told how he went through a course on how to enter a house in a hostage situation. 5 persons were needed; one to break down (or just open) the door, two to make a first entry and secure the room and two to backup/support from behind. Once in a room they would re-group so that everyone was back in their position before entering the next room. This made the 2 persons in front most in risk of getting hit during entry, and the specialist for opening doors was essential. Now, it took some time to re-group and by doing so they might lose their momentum and an enemy would have time to take countermeasures. A way of mitigating that was to change how they entered a house in a possible hostage situation. They learned the READ system (reading the situation in order to know how to act!). Still 5 persons going in, but once through the first door, which was most likely to be the one that needed a specialist for blowing it up or opening it otherwise, the first two persons who reached the next door would now be the once to open it and make the first entry and the remaining team would support. By doing so, the roles changed all the time, so they would have to adapt.

Does it sound familiar? Sounds almost like agile, doesn’t it?

Anthony also referred to LEAN, especially the Waste types. And not to the 7 types of waste, no, to the 8 types of waste!! Yes, and number 8 is important: “Skills – Underutilizing capabilities, delegating tasks with inadequate training”.

How can that be put into context of adapting your role? It simply means that even though you have an area of expertise it doesn’t mean that you don’t have other areas of knowledge that can add value whenever your expertise isn’t of use. On the other hand, do not waste time by working on tasks for which you have no skills unless no other persons with that specific skill available.

-You are a Terminator, right?
-Yes. Cyberdyne Systems, Model 101
-… you're like a machine underneath, right? But sort of alive outside?
-I'm a cybernetic organism. Living tissue over a metal endoskeleton.

Science fiction? Yes! Impossible to think of? No!

Referring back to the keynote by Lisa and Janet Tuesday morning; They came on the scene with a presentation about the future, dressed up like Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock from the original Star Trek series first aired back in 1966 – that’s now 50 years ago. Back then, the technology in Star Trek was amazing, it was so unreal. But is it? It was, for sure, but actually it is basically just the transporter (you know; “Beam me up, Scotty!) that is unreal today. Most of the devices have been superseded by the current technology!

That is one of the points in the talk by Daniël Maslyn (last year did the famous “wrote my presentation on hotel stationary last night, took pictures of it with my cellphone and put it in PowerPoint” presentation).

Daniël’s talk; “We are the robots; Agile Testing for future robots” had a lot of cool references to Blade Runner (in the Directors Cut Version there is a unicorn appearing).

The reason for this is also the fact that the future (Blade Runner is supposed to reflect the world anno 2019) may not be that far away. Different people are construction autonomous robots, are constructing parts for them, for instance eyes that we do today, not for robots, but as spare parts for humans.

And this poses a challenge in testing. These spare parts and robots are becoming increasingly complex, and most of them must be tested in the live, they cannot be simulated! Of cause you can do some testing on the software and hardware devices individually, but only when put together you’ll get the real result!

One of the tests natural to run on robots is the Turing test. For those who don’t know the Turing test it is a test of a machine's ability to exhibit intelligent behavior equivalent to, or indistinguishable from, that of a human (definition from; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turing_test).

Now are we at a point where the Turing test is needed? Maybe not, but we are getting there.

That’s it for the highlights. The rest of day 3 was dedicated to CAT Trainer Day.

I really hope to be back next year for Agile Testing Days in Potsdam :o)

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