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A variety of tools on a workbench For Distributed Agile Teams, It’s Not All about the Tools[article]

Many managers and distributed team members think that if they just had the right tools, they could make some agile approach work. Maybe, but tools only enhance the work of a collaborative agile team. Before you select tools, make sure you have people who can work together and have enough skills and capabilities for your distributed team. Tools do not make the team; they support the team.

Peter Varhol and Gerie Owens What Testers Can Learn from Airline Safety Improvements: An Interview with Peter Varhol and Gerie Owens[interview]
Video

Technologist and evangelist Peter Varhol and Gerie Owens, a test architect and certified ScrumMaster, discuss their STARWEST presentation, “What Aircrews Can Teach Testers about Testing.” They talk about how testers can apply airline safety practices to their teams’ delivery of high-quality applications through complementary expertise, collaboration, and decision-making. They also explain how blind deference to authority and automation can be detrimental to a testing team, and how to use everyone’s skills to achieve success.

Jennifer Bonine's picture Jennifer Bonine
Gold-plated leaves Build Just Enough of a Feature with ATDD[article]

Developers have a tendency to overbuild their code. This is frequently due to not knowing exactly when they're done and not knowing how robust a feature needs to be. Acceptance test-driven development (ATDD) is a great way to avoid this practice because when the acceptance test passes, the developer knows they're done building that particular feature.

David Bernstein's picture David Bernstein
Dona Sarkar The Glamour Is Back in Testing: An Interview with Dona Sarkar[interview]
Video

In this interview, Dona Sarkar, head of the Windows Insider Program at Microsoft, speaks about how the initiative allows them to get user feedback before final release. She highlights the importance of getting out in the field to understand your users’ experiences and the difficulties they encounter. Dona also discusses the evolution of the testing role, saying she anticipates that in the near future, testers will have their moment.

Jennifer Bonine's picture Jennifer Bonine
Four yellow pipes Continuous Delivery Is Not a Pipeline[article]

Pretty much everything you hear about DevOps mentions “the pipeline.” Continuous delivery is not really about the pipeline, however. Continuous delivery is about two things: testing strategy and branching strategy. The pipeline is important; it is an integral part of DevOps. However, the central element is the practice of testing continually using automated tests.

Clifford Berg's picture Clifford Berg
A piece of plain paper laid over a pile of other paper with typed words Overcoming Challenges to Good Test Documentation[article]

Getting good test documentation is a consistent challenge. Agile proposes that you should go very light on documentation, and while test documentation does not need to be heavy, it does need to be clear and cover all that the product is intended to do so you can ensure testing is consistent and results are recorded. Here's how to overcome some major barriers to getting good test documentation.

Steven Penella's picture Steven Penella
Woman facilitating a Scrum meeting with her agile team 8 Scrum Meeting Mistakes to Avoid[article]

Scrum meetings aim to increase productivity and reduce rework by improving and enhancing the level of daily communication. Doing so helps teams stay on the same page, properly break down work into small and manageable tasks, and keep everything running smoothly. However, Scrum meetings can go wrong very quickly if they are not done properly. Here are eight common mistakes you should try to avoid.

Freddie Tubbs's picture Freddie Tubbs
Person playing the piano Using Agile to Learn Anything[article]

Acquiring new skills is always admirable, and it can even help you find new opportunities in an increasingly competitive job market. By going in with a plan and organizing your self-improvement activities, you’ll be learning new skills in no time. Agile can help. Here's how forty-five minutes a day and a structured approach using kanban can set you up for success.

Shakeel Muhammad's picture Shakeel Muhammad
Wilson Mar Why Testers Should Be Using GitHub: An Interview with Wilson Mar[interview]
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
Robert Sabourin Testing in the Dark: An Interview with Rob Sabourin[interview]
Video

Rob Sabourin, the program chair for STARWEST 2018, discusses the selection process for conference speakers, his favorite aspect of the conference, and the interactive Test Lab. He also details his “Testing in the Dark” talk, which gives strategies to use when you’re required to test software without any requirements, design, or product knowledge.

Jennifer Bonine's picture Jennifer Bonine
Julie Gardiner Emotional Intelligence in Testing: An Interview with Julie Gardiner[interview]
Video

Julie Gardiner, head of QA at Testing Rainmaker Limited, discusses the STAR conferences Test Lab she leads, which allows people to attend virtually and even win prizes for best test report and best bug report. She also talks about her upcoming book, and why emotional awareness, self-management, empathy, and relationship building are important skills for testers.

Jennifer Bonine's picture Jennifer Bonine
Agile team discussing portfolio investments Software Portfolio Management Simplified for Agile[article]

Software portfolio management involves deciding which products and features to invest in to stay competitive and increase profit. But traditional portfolio management has infrequent assessments and isn't very flexible to market needs. When teams are agile but the portfolio process is not, we can't maximize business value. Here are some ways portfolio management can be adjusted to address this challenge.

Pratik Kothari's picture Pratik Kothari
Greg Paskal Data Visualization in Test Automation: A Conversation with Greg Paskal[interview]
Video

Greg Paskal, test automation lead at Ramsey Solutions, talks about data lakes and how to effectively use data visualization. Done well, data visualization should help practitioners, managers, and stakeholders easily consume, understand, and act on the information the visual displays.

Owen Gotimer's picture Owen Gotimer
Agile DevOps West Get Your Poker Face On: How to Effectively Use Planning Poker to Slay Project Estimations[presentation]
Slideshow

How long will that take? It’s a question we’ve all either asked or been asked, and it can be a challenge to answer accurately. How long will it take to get that feature out the door?

Laura Janusek
Test pyramid with the base unit test layer eroded The Eroding Agile Test Pyramid[article]

The test pyramid is a great model for designing your test portfolio. However, the bottom tends to fall out when you shift from progression testing to regression testing. The tests start failing, eroding the number of working unit tests at the base of your pyramid. If you don't have the development resources required for continuous unit test maintenance, there are still things you can do.

Wolfgang Platz's picture Wolfgang Platz

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