Mobile Applications Testing: From Concepts to Practice: An Interview with Max Saperstone


For almost a decade, Max Saperstone has been a test engineer focusing on test automation and the continuous integration/delivery process. He is currently developing a new testing architecture for SecureCI to allow testing of multiple interfaces, custom reporting, and minimal test upkeep.


Max Saperstone will be presenting a presentation titled "Mobile Applications Testing: From Concepts to Practice" at STARCANADA 2014, which will take place April 5-9, 2014.


About "Mobile Applications Testing: From Concepts to Practice":

As applications for smartphones and tablets become incredibly popular, organizations encounter increasing pressure to quickly and successfully deliver testing for these devices. When faced with a mobile testing project, many testers find it tempting to apply the same methods and techniques used for desktop applications. Although some of these concepts transfer directly, testing mobile applications presents its own special challenges. Max Saperstone says if you follow the same practices and techniques as you have before, you will miss critical defects. Learn how to effectively test mobile applications and how to add more structure and organization to generate effective test ideas to exploit the capabilities and weaknesses of mobile devices. Max shares firsthand experiences with testing mobile applications and discusses how to address various challenges. Work on real problems on your own device and learn how to be productive while testing mobile applications.


Cameron Philipp-Edmonds: Today we have Max Saperstone, who is going to be speaking at STARCANADA 2014, April 5 through April 9. Max Saperstone has been a test engineer focusing on test automation and a continuous integration and continuous delivery process.

Max specializes in open storage tools, Selenium, JMeter, AutoIT, Cucumber, and Chef. He has led several testing automation efforts, including developing an automated suite focused on web-based software to operate over several applications. Max also headed a major product, developing an automated testing structure to run Cucumber tests over multiple test interfaces and environments, while also developing a system to keep test data "ageless." He is currently developing a new testing architecture for SecureCI to allow testing of multiple interfaces, custom reporting, and minimal test upkeep.

All right, did we catch everything?

Max Saperstone: Yeah.

Cameron: Fantastic. And you are doing a session at STARCANADA which is titled "Mobile Applications Testing: From Concepts to Practice," which covers the emerging trends in mobile testing. So, I would like to ask you some questions related to that.

First question is, Why is it not advisable to apply the same principles and methodologies for testing desktop applications as when you are testing mobile applications?

Max: A lot of the same principles can actually apply when you are going from just desktop applications, but really you want to be looking at a lot more things as well. Not only that, but there is a much bigger and different motivation and drive behind the testing that goes on in a mobile application. Mobile applications really put their emphasis on the usability, getting the application to market quickly—they want real quick updates and networking. You don't see those features quite as often in desktop applications. So really, you want to make sure that you are kind of focusing your testing really in those three areas.

If the application isn't usable, people who have desktop applications are usually a lot more accepting of minor bugs, whereas mobile applications, they will usually throw it away almost immediately.

Cameron: OK. Basically, the structure of how mobile applications need to be for users is a lot more strict.

Max: Yeah. Absolutely. You're looking at a much pickier user base and what they're going for, and that's one of the major differences. It really should be focused on when you're testing these mobile applications.

About the author

Cameron Philipp-Edmonds's picture Cameron Philipp-Edmonds

When not working on his theory of time travel, Cameron T. Philipp-Edmonds is writing for TechWell, StickyMinds, and AgileConnection. With a background in advertising and marketing, Cameron is partial to the ways that technology can enhance a company's brand equity. In his personal life, Cameron enjoys long walks on the beach, romantic dinners by candlelight, and playing practical jokes on his coworkers.

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