Articles

A partially open laptop shows a colorful screen, photo by Ash Edmonds When Software Development Becomes a True Profession

David Bernstein describes the software profession as an industry of amateurs. He argues that it does not yet have many of the things that a true profession has, such as a defined path of entry or good apprenticeship opportunities. A big reason is that computer programming hasn't been around as long as other industries, but what else will it take for software to rise in the ranks?

David Bernstein's picture David Bernstein
Drawing of a person ascending stairs Continuous Improvement Activities beyond the Retrospective

One of the principles behind the Agile Manifesto is “At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly.” Unfortunately, many associate that practice with performing team retrospectives at the end of a sprint, or periodically in kanban. But if you seek to build a high-performing team, there are more improvement activities you should consider adopting.

Jeffery Payne's picture Jeffery Payne
Man holding string lights up to his face Embracing the Learning Curve in Software Development

In software development, we're constantly learning new skills because we have to. Technology and its associated best practices are constantly changing, but this is a good thing—it means our industry is evolving quickly. It also means we are constantly on the learning curve. Having a good mindset about continuously learning can help you go far in the software world.

David Bernstein's picture David Bernstein
telescope Agile Trends to Watch in 2018

With 2018 well underway, it seems like a good time to look ahead and think about what we hope to accomplish this year. Find out which agile trends these software experts are most looking forward to in the coming months.

Heather Shanholtzer's picture Heather Shanholtzer

Better Software Magazine Articles

Be Indispensable: Cross-Train like a Testing Athlete Be Indispensable: Cross-Train like a Testing Athlete

Stretching your skills and preparing for organizational and work-related change is vital for any QA tester. Your best approach is to work on complementing your skills and competencies.

Bonnie Bailey's picture Bonnie Bailey
HOW TECHNOLOGY IS CHANGING THE WAY WE LEARN How Technology Is Changing the Way We Learn

Modern technologies like virtual reality, cloud-based systems, and measurement of content have disrupted how we learn. Standards have evolved to improve how learning material can be published to any device.

Troy Tolle's picture Troy Tolle
overwhelmed at work Saying No to More Work

We’ve all been placed in the situation where a boss asks you to perform more work than you can possibly handle. Johanna Rothman knows firsthand that there is a better way to respond that benefits you and your manager.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman
Recognizing #WomenInAgile

As part of her involvement with #WomenInAgile, Natalie Warnert conducted a study to determine why women are less involved in the agile community and what can be done about it. Her research shows some surprising results.

Natalie Warnert's picture Natalie Warnert

Interviews

Wilson Mar Why Testers Should Be Using GitHub: An Interview with Wilson Mar
Video

In this interview, Wilson Mar, principal DevOps performance evangelist at JetBloom, describes the importance of Git to testing and to securing employment in the field. Because Git is a great way for testers to display their work, many interviewers look at an applicant’s public GitHub account as a means of judging their work. Wilson discusses his STARWEST session on Git and resources he provides on his GitHub account about Git basics.

Jennifer Bonine's picture Jennifer Bonine
Chris Loder Getting Restarted in Test Automation: A Conversation with Chris Loder
Video

Chris Loder, automation architect at InGenius, talks about being a self-taught automation developer, why learning new skills is so important, and the synergy between manual testers, automation testers, and developers.

Owen Gotimer's picture Owen Gotimer
Experiences at STAREAST 2018: An Interview with Michael Sowers
Video

Michael Sowers, TechWell’s IT director and program chair for STAREAST 2018, discusses some of the activities, presentations and networking opportunities at the event. He also discusses what to expect at the all-new Agile Testing Days.

Jennifer Bonine's picture Jennifer Bonine
Adam Auerbach Time to Make an Employment Change: An Interview with Adam Auerbach
Video

In this interview, Adam Auerbach, Vice President and Head of Assurance Practice at EPAM Systems, discusses the need to create a strategy to achieve career goals, recognizing when it is time to change employers having maximized your contributions and gained the optimal benefits and skills.

Jennifer Bonine's picture Jennifer Bonine

Conference Presentations

STARCANADA The Life of a Tester, from Once Upon a Time to Happily Ever After
Slideshow

Most fairy tales start out with a scary premise and move to a happy ending. Lately, we have heard lots of scary stories about the future of testing. As machine learning and artificial intelligence continue to gain prominence, we see even more concerns about the tester’s career. With the...

Jennifer Bonine
STARWEST 2018 Working with Anxiety: From Personal Weakness to Career Strength
Slideshow

Each of us has personal weaknesses that are often perceived to have negative impacts on performance and capability in the workplace. When this weakness is prominent to yourself or others, are you capable of benefiting IT teams and qualified to do the job? In dealing with negative impacts of her Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Julene Johnson falls into this category and has experienced personal doubt in her ability to perform her job well. Over time, however, she’s noticed that habits and techniques developed while dealing with anxiety can be applied in a manner that improves her life and her career and gives confidence to others in her capabilities. Similarly, skills and abilities gained while working as a tester have helped her build successful patterns in her life to help her manage anxiety more effectively.

Julene Johnson
STARWEST 2018 The Life of a Tester, from Once Upon a Time to Happily Ever After
Slideshow

Most fairy tales start out with a scary premise and move to a happy ending. Lately, we have heard lots of scary stories about the future of testing. As machine learning and artificial intelligence continue to gain prominence, we see even more concerns about the tester’s career. With the help of a famous animation team, Janna and Jennifer will take you through a wild animated journey from what it was like in the early days of software to where we are today. We’ll explore the evolution of the testing profession, as well as what it will become in the future. As this story moves from black and white to full color, you will get a history lesson on where some practices we may take for granted originated, review times when testers and developers were separated and more of adversaries than collaborators, and finish with the present, where quality is everyone’s responsibility.

Jennifer Bonine
STAREAST 2018 Elegant Test Weapons for a More Civilized Age
Slideshow

Software Engineering as a discipline is always evolving. The technologies and tools that were in vogue yesterday are passé today and gone altogether tomorrow. Despite this high churn, there are a number of skills that software testers, in particular, possess that are eternally useful. They cut across time and tools and even job titles. Melissa will help software testers look past technologies and titles to explore the skills that they may already possess that are in high demand. She will explain some of the hottest job titles and technologies in the market today, and go in-depth into what skills many software testers already hold that uniquely qualify them for these positions. In the most cutting-edge software companies – from startups to megacorps – traditional software testing functions have been encompassed in roles that might not be immediately obvious.

Melissa Benua

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