Better Software Magazine Archive:

Nov/Dec 2001

IN THIS ISSUE

Tactical Project Management at a Startup
By Ulla Merz

Ulla Merz explains the role of a project manager at a startup company. She addresses topics such as requirements definition and project schedule; project status meetings; and establishing a change control board.

A Look at TestTrack Pro by Seapine Software
By Michele D. Rigney

Michele Rigney finds that Seapine's TestTrack Pro has added value to her company's products by providing a centralized system that captures the wants and needs of clients. Issues are tracked from initial report through resolution and release, and all the steps along the way are documented.

The Two Bugs
By Brian Marick

Brian Marick applies the philosophical concept of "ready-to-hand" to software programming and describes two bugs that illustrate problems caused by mismatched reuse of ideas.

Reference Point
By Danny R. Faught

Danny Faught recommends Testing Applications on the Web: Test Planning for Internet-Based Systems by Hung Q. Nguyen. Faught concludes: "This book does not attempt to be a general reference on software testing. What it provides, instead, is domain-specific information that helps the reader plan for testing a Web-based application. Its clear illustrations of important Web testing approaches and its extensive checklists give testers detailed suggestions for their testing, based on real Web development experiences."

Facing Up to the Truth
By Esther Derby

Technical Editor Esther Derby uses examples to show that our ability to "face the truth" and take effective action rests on the ability to be in a mental state where our emotions and fears aren't in control.

Asking the Right Questions and Asking Them Right
By Naomi Karten

Naomi Karten shares how to ask the questions that ensure you and your customer are on the same page. Her tips include: 1) guard against conflicting interpretations; 2) don't jump to conclusions; 3) gather feedback early and often; 4) examine your rules for commenting; 5) conduct congruent questioning; and 6) find out what's important to your customers.

Finding a Mentor
By Elisabeth Hendrickson

Perhaps you've just changed careers and are looking for a leg up in your new chosen field. Perhaps you're an old pro wondering how to take your career to the next level. No matter how long you've been doing what you do, it's always good to have someone by your side to help move your career forward–a mentor. Elisabeth Hendrickson describes what qualities to look for in a mentor.

James Bach on Explaining Testing to Them
By James Bach

Are your co-workers in the dark when it comes to understanding how testing works? James Bach provides good responses to common questions, including nine basic principles of good hallway explanations. Learn how to give a programmer or manager a more accurate view of your job.

Are You Ready for the Test Automation Game?
By Kerry Zallar

Automating your testing can significantly impact your business. Here are things to consider before investing in test automation.

The Human Side of Process Improvement
By Judah Mogilensky

Interpersonal relationships can make the difference between effective and ineffective technical initiatives. Here are ways to address this frequently neglected aspect of organizational change.

Getting the Most from Outsourcing
By Eric Patel

Outsourcing can be a great way to augment your software efforts. Here are guidelines to help you choose the right provider and ensure that you get what you paid for.

The Test Matrix: How to Keep a Complex Test Project on Track
By Mark Pawson

When testing needs to account for different user environments and installation configurations, the possible combinations can add up quickly. Read how one company used a simple data organization method to keep everything on track.

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