Monday, 23 February 2009

My First Test Is Still A Valid Test

Evil Tester recently had an interesting blog post - Do you still remember your first ‘real’ test - the first time you could remember purposefully thinking like a tester with regards to software and actively hunting out a bug.

I thought about it and although I had found a lot of bugs when I was a programmer ( I had the tester DNA but didn't know it ), it was only after I'd been asked to help with the testing and QA effort and bought myself a couple of testing books that I started to realise what testing really was and that all I'd been doing until then was bashing the keyboard

One of the books was "How to Break Software: A Practical Guide to Testing " by James Whittaker which made me realise some of my cunning tricks to find bugs had proper names like Boundary Value Analysis
I was soon putting some of the ideas in these books into practice - easy to get rspect and credibility from the programmers when you can break their app in 15 seconds when challenged to see if you could break the program in 10 minutes

Evil Tester also suggested in his blog that
"Our attitudes to testing. Our approaches to testing. Our beliefs about testing - all these things change over time."

I've learned an awful lot since I first read those books

The troubling thought though is that these early techniques are still valid and I can still easily break an app in 15 seconds using those same simple tests

I then finally finished my copy of "How We Test Software at Microsoft" which ends with a look at the future and how quality could be driven upstream so that testers are no longer finding 100's of defects and are spending their time finding the really challenging ones
( for more on this see the discussion started here on the Software Testing Club.

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