STARWEST 2010 - Software Testing Conference


Exploratory Testing of Mobile Applications

Exploratory testing-the process of simultaneous test design, execution, and learning-is a popular approach to testing traditional application software. Can you apply this approach to testing mobile applications? At first, it is tempting to merely employ the same methods and techniques that you would use with other software applications. Although some concepts transfer directly, testing mobile applications presents special challenges you must consider and address.

Jonathan Kohl, Kohl Concepts, Inc.

Focusing with Clear Test Objectives

Frustrated with your team’s testing results-sometimes great, sometimes lacking? Do you consistently over promise and under deliver? If these situations sound familiar, you may be suffering from the ills of UCT (Unclear Test Objectives). Clearly defining test objectives is vital to your project’s success; it’s also seriously hard to get right.

Sharon Robson, Software Education
Futility-based Test Automation

Developers and other project stakeholders are paying increased attention to test automation because of its promise to speed development and reduce the costs of systems over their complete lifecycle. Unfortunately, flawed test automation efforts have prevented many teams from achieving the productivity and savings that their organizations expect and demand. Clint Sprauve shares his real-world experiences, exposing the most common bad habits that test automation teams practice.

Clinton Sprauve, Borland (a Micro Focus company)
Go Sleuthing with the Right Test Technique

Although much information is available on test design techniques, very little is written on how to select which techniques to use for the job at hand. Derk-Jan de Grood believes that many testers find it difficult to select the right techniques and very often use a technique simply because they know it. Instead, the best reason is that the technique is likely to discover the most important errors quickly.

Derk-Jan de Grood, Valori

Grassroots Quality: Changing the Organization One Person at a Time

Throughout its history, SAS has valued innovation and agility over formal processes. Attempts to impose corporate-wide policies have been viewed with suspicion and skepticism. For quality analysts and test groups with a quality mission, the challenge is to marry innovation with the structures expected from a quality-managed development process. Frank Lassiter shares the experiences of his group’s working within the corporate culture rather than struggling against it.

Frank Lassiter, SAS Institute Inc
Handling Failures in Automated Acceptance Tests

One of the aims of automated functional testing is to run many tests and discover multiple errors in one execution of the test suite. However, when an automated test runs into unexpected behavior-system errors, wrong paths taken, incorrect data stored, and more-the test fails. When a test fails, additional errors, called inherited errors, can result or the entire test can stop unintentionally. Either way, some portion of the system remains untested, and either the error must be corrected or the automation changed before proceeding.

Alexandra Imrie, BREDEX GmbH
Model-based Testing: The Key to Testing Industrialization

Customers who want “more, faster, cheaper” put pressure on the development schedule, usually leaving less time for testing. The solution is to parallelize testing and development so that they proceed together. But how, especially when the requirements and software are constantly changing? Model-based testing (MBT) distills the testing effort down to the essential business processes and requirements, capitalizing on abstractions to reduce the costs of change and improve test data management.

Bruno Legeard, Smartesting
Multi-level Testing in Agile Development

Before they could begin automated testing, test teams used to wait on the sidelines for developers to produce a stable user interface. Not anymore. Agile development environments and component-based applications challenge testers to contribute value earlier and continuously throughout development. Although most agile testers currently focus on unit and integration testing, they also need to test the application’s business and service layers-all the way to the system level.

Roi Carmel, Hewlett-Packard
Operational Testing: Walking a Mile in the User's Boots

Often, it is a long way from the system’s written requirements to what the end user really needs. When testing is based on the requirements and focuses solely on the features being implemented, one critical perspective may be forgotten-whether or not the system is fit for its intended purpose and does what the users need it to do.

Gitte Ottosen, Systematic Software Engineering

Patterns for Test Asset Reusability

Typically, testers write a test case for the one component and sub-system they are testing, thus limiting its value. What if you could repurpose and reuse previously developed test assets across several components and sub-systems? Vishal Chowdhary shares three test patterns he has encountered many times while testing various .NET Framework components at Microsoft. The “Test One, Get One Free” pattern describes how to test features that are layered-where a feature enhances an inner core feature.

Vishal Chowdhary, Microsoft Corporation


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