Better Software Magazine Articles

Why Do Defects Escape?

What happens when defects go unnoticed until it is too late? Mayank provides an insightful view of the true cost of not providing enough test coverage during a software development lifecycle. He also suggests some techniques to ensure that defects are identified and mitigated early.

Mayank Sharma's picture Mayank Sharma
FAQ: How Can I Know When to Stop Testing?

In this installment of FAQ, SQE Trainer Rick Craig answers one of the questions students ask him most often.

Rick Craig's picture Rick Craig
So, You've Got a Problem: Crafting Remarks and Abstracts for Defect Reports

Software defect reports are among the most important deliverables to come out of software testing. They are as important as the test plan and will have more impact on the quality of the product than most other deliverables from the software test team. It's worth the effort to learn how to write an effective defect report that conveys the proper message and simplifies the process for everyone.

Kelly Whitmill's picture Kelly Whitmill
Stop The Insanity! Using Root Cause Analysis to Avoid Repeating Your Mistakes

We've all heard Einstein's definition of insanity, and it definitely holds true in software development. We "are" going to make mistakes in product development, but root-cause analysis can help us understand those mistakes and be proactive in not repeating them.

Ed Weller's picture Ed Weller

Conference Presentations

Orthogonal Defect Classification: An Agile Test/QA Primer
Slideshow

Can defect root cause analysis be made agile? Can we transform a multi-hour task from the classical world of software engineering into one that takes minutes and yields greater insights? Learn how Orthogonal Defect Classification (ODC) extracts semantics from defects and turns them into insights on the development process using analytics. After a quick overview of ODC, Ram Chillarege presents a case study to illustrate the method using real-world data on an agile project. They used ODC Triggers to measure test effectiveness at the end of every sprint to evaluate the effectiveness of testing compared to earlier sprints. This ODC process takes just minutes and brings its insight into the realm of the agile development practices. Put a powerful analytical technique in your agile toolbox to increase the velocity of your agile project and find new ways to reduce defects while measuring the quality of testing.

Ram Chillarege, Chillarege Inc.
Better Than a Root Canal: Root Cause Analysis of Defects

The quality problems many companies face after releasing a new product can be as painful as a root canal. One way to avoid this pain is timely root cause analysis (RCA) during development. Proper RCA and resulting improvements prevent product failures, eliminate associated rework, and reduce the pain of initial product releases. Based on empirical research conducted on today's RCA practices in the industry, Jan van Moll explains why many companies fail to do effective root cause analysis in practice. Presenting astonishing RCA data from projects, Jan shares specific examples of successes and failures with RCA. He points out the common pitfalls of defect analysis and demonstrates how to work toward problem solutions in a pragmatic and practical manner. Learn the critical success factors of RCA derived from industry experience to improve your practices and produce better products.

Jan Moll, Philips Healthcare - Magnetic Resonance Systems
Systematic Techniques for Fault Detection and Isolation

Selecting the appropriate testing techniques and test cases improves test efficiency, reduces time to market, and gives you confidence that the system is ready to ship. Using real-world case studies as examples, Madhav Phadke explains the fundamentals of robust test case selection and how code coverage can improve your test results. He discusses ways for testers to support debugging and faster repairs by isolating defects to a specific part of the software. Learn to select test outputs based on "total function evaluation" rather than end customer outputs and ways to use orthogonal arrays for testing combinations of parameters. Take away a list of free or inexpensive tools that can speed up your testing process.

Madhav Phadke, Phadke Associates
Applying Orthogonal Defect Classification Principles to Software Testing

Test escape analysis and corrective action tracking (TEACAT) is a method used to collect and utilize information about the causes of test escapes to prevent customer-found defects and improve internal test, development, and release processes. The TEACAT approach provides testers and test managers with the primary causes of defect escapes from the organizations into the field. Suzanne Garner takes you through the test escape analysis process at Cisco and shows you how test-specific ODC fields can be employed to provide customer focus to test process improvement activities, and ensure that test gaps are closed.

Suzanne Garner, Cisco Systems Inc

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