Articles

Circle made of arrows Why You Need Continuous Testing in DevOps

DevOps is more than adopting the right set of tools; it's a cultural shift that incorporates testing at each stage of the agile project lifecycle. Continuous testing is key to unlocking this culture change because it weaves testing activities into every part of the software design, development, and deployment processes, which helps everyone involved communicate more, collaborate better, and innovate faster.

Tom Alexander
Sticky notes on cabinet doors Applying Agile to Life: Taking Retrospectives outside the Workplace

A lot of what agile teams do can be used effectively outside software development teams, and even outside the typical business organization. For instance, retrospectives and the practice of talking about what went well, what you should keep doing, and what can be improved can be applied anywhere—even to families. Read on to learn how to bring continuous improvement into your daily life.

Ben Kopel
Time lapse of cars driving over a bridge, photo by Anders Jildén The Future of Agile Is Digital

Agile software development is no longer about a better way to develop software. Agile is about changing the way digital technologies, products, and services are created to take advantage of enhanced CPU power and the tools that power has made possible. Here's how digitalization is reshaping agile teams, projects, and the very definition of success.

Allan Kelly
Four people on a crew team rowing together Rowing in the Same Direction: Use Value Streams to Align Work

Ambiguity abounds about value streams, so it’s good to clarify what they are, why they matter, and how to exploit them. It's important to help employees understand the organization's definition of value, to provide visibility on how business value is created, and to focus on the fast flow of value through the value streams. If everyone understands which direction to row the boat, they can steer toward it together.

Dominica DeGrandis

Better Software Magazine Articles

The Amazing Benefits of Integrated ALM Tools

For years, developers have struggled with using individual lifecycle management tools, but no longer! Joe Farah walks you through a history and benefits of an integration of ALM tools that every team should seriously consider.

Joe Farah
Why NoSQL Matters and What Configuration Management Experts Need to Know About It

NoSQL is a new approach to data storage that addresses many problems associated with relational databases. Many highly popular websites—including Facebook, Netflix, and Digg—are using NoSQL to crunch large volumes of data. Eugene Dvorkin gives us insight into why NoSQL is important and what CM experts need to know about it.

Eugene Dvorkin
Practical Security Testing for Web Applications

It seems like every week the press has yet another story about security breaches or stolen data at some of the world’s largest companies or government agencies. Sometimes the responsibility for ensuring thorough security resides with an IT security group, and other times it gets outsourced altogether. The responsibility seldom falls to testing teams. However, this is changing. Having trained and experienced testers hunt for security bugs will make web applications safer from hackers and will further protect consumers, corporate assets, and brands.. Scott Aziz offers some practical techniques that will help you get started.

Scott Aziz
Traditional Test Engineering, Your Days Are Numbered

In the first installment of this article, Dr. James Whittaker discussed turning testing on its head—to revitalize and improve the value of late-stage testing. James also discussed ideas behind empowering your dogfooders, testers, and the crowd to significantly and efficiently improve software quality. In part two, Jason Arbon discusses the research and engineering experimentation behind realizing these ideas into new tools and processes.

Jason Arbon

Interviews

Cher Fox Why Test Automation Is Important for Agile Data Teams: An Interview with Cher Fox

In this interview, Cher Fox, of Fox Consulting, explains why test automation is essential for agile data teams' success. However, there are many other items to consider and address before implementing test automation. You may be able to get started with tools you already have.

Josiah Renaudin
Tanya Kravstov Identify Bottlenecks in Your Agile and DevOps Processes: An Interview with Tanya Kravtsov

In this interview, Tanya Kravtsov, a director of QA at Audible, explains why identifying bottlenecks is so critical when you’re turning to agile and DevOps, as well as how automating manual processes can lead to better quality.

Josiah Renaudin
Jeff Morgan How Continuous Integration, Continuous Delivery, and Agile Impact Business: An Interview with Jeff Morgan
Video

In this interview, chief technology officer and cofounder of LeanDog, Jeff “Cheezy” Morgan, explains how continuous integration and agile are impacting not only technology groups, but the businesses that the people in the technology groups are helping to enable, support, and develop for.

Jennifer Bonine
Melissa Benua discusses continuous integration Employ Continuous Integration Processes to Make Your Code Work: An Interview with Melissa Benua
Video

In this interview, Melissa Benua, senior backend engineer for PlayFab, explains the new way of life that continuous integration brings. She imparts practical advice for creating builds and running automation on the fly without spending hundreds of hours or thousands of dollars.

Jennifer Bonine

Conference Presentations

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
STAREAST 2018 Influencing Stakeholders Using Fact-based Information
Slideshow

With all the open source tools available on the market it can be overwhelming as to which ones might meet your needs and which ones will work best in your environment to create a high performing team and metrics dashboard. Join Jennifer as she explains the relationship of data, your environment, and how a hub and spoke model can link all your different data sets and tools together. She identifies opportunities for applying test data analytics across the engineering and test landscape, ranging from high-value test cases to dynamically generated regression test suites. She will review ways to collaborate and show results in a way that clearly demonstrates progress and how to present a visual metrics dashboard to your leadership and stakeholders in the organization.

Jennifer Bonine
Better Software West 2018, Agile Dev West 2018, DevOps West 2018 Engineering Productivity and Enterprise Quality at Scale
Slideshow

Over the past two years, PayPal has been on a journey to modernize its internal development and test systems, from test environments, implementing enterprise continuous integration and code propagation into the development pipeline, to release processes and production code validation. Jose Buraschi and Nir Szilagyi will talk about transforming the code of 5,000 developers across 350 teams and how it required social “magic” to influence behaviors and motivate engagement. This modernization of PayPal's development practices has involved creating reliable integrated test environments, continuous integration, automated code propagation, and automated validation before each deployment. Instead of asking for a list of things developers need to do differently, Jose and Nir asked for simple changes that, through side effects, led to the desired results.

Nir Szilagyi
Agile Dev West 2018, Better Software West 2018, DevOps West 2018 Faster Food and a Better Place to Sleep: Applying Agile Outside Software
Slideshow

Agile methods aren’t just for software anymore—actually, they haven’t been for quite a while. Agile's collaborative, iterative, incremental approaches to work have caused it to go mainstream. But can we apply team-based agile straight out of the box in a nonsoftware context? Although most of the principles and patterns apply, sometimes the practices and frameworks need modification for a particular context. Mike Cottmeyer will explore two case studies of agile journeys: an international hotel chain going through a major rebranding initiative, and a well-known fast food restaurant looking to optimize its kitchen production capacity. These are two totally different companies in two totally different industries, both trying to use agile to solve their problems. We’ll look at the challenges each faced, what they had in common, and the patterns, tools, and techniques they are using.

Mike Cottmeyer

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