Testing tours – Testing to learn Slack’s configurations

It all started with an e-mail. It was that time of the year and we were anxious for it. What would be the challenge this year? Who will rise from their chairs and demand a place in the team?

The quiet settles and a new email asks shyly, “Who wants to be in the TeamStar competition this year?”. The possible contenders are partially known – Dorel and Dolly. Both of them have been on this path before. Later on, they are joined by Oana and Elena.

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Testing tours – what is there more to add?

We recently had a meetup in Cluj focused on testing tours, with the occasion of Eurostar’s contest Teamstar. As part of their contest entry some of our colleagues decided to create a workshop in which we would practice with tours. They prepared intensely for a few weeks: searched materials on this technique, picked a list of tours, practiced with them, and created an exercise for the meetup.

The first thing I realized from this experience is that there is a lot out there about testing tours. The organizers kindly provided some materials to read before the meetup, from diverse sources. Going through them, I found references to even more materials on tours. (You can find them at the end of the article). So it seems to be quite a known technique.

But why all this focus on testing tours? In what ways are they valuable?

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SBTM with iTester and Google Drive

SBTM (Session-Based Test Management) is one of the ways of structuring exploratory testing. There are several tools that help you implement SBTM in your testing work. At Altom, we have developed a couple of our own tools to help us manage our exploratory testing, each suitable for different needs. One of these tools is iTester, which should be useful in case you are running a test session in an environment where using a computer is not practical, while your iPad or iPhone is close at hand. There is also an equivalent for your Google Drive: the SBTM Session Template which allows you to record your sessions straight from your browser, without installing any additional tools.

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Test or be square! – Testing through the lens of a 12 year old

A while back, my mom had mentioned that Dara, my oldest niece, who is about to turn 12 soon, had started a computer science class at school and was having some problems with C++ programming that no one in the family could help her with. So, when I was at home visiting them a few months ago, I asked Dara if she wanted me to see if I can help her with that, and she mentioned she had problems understanding arrays.

We went through what the teacher had told them and I did my best to explain them a bit better and give her some examples, which seemed to have helped. However, I suggested that we try to do one of her homework exercises together and asked her if she had any that we could look at. She told me about this website that is used by students all over Romania (http://campion.edu.ro/) which has programming exercises grouped by age/level and by the topic they cover, and that there are a few there that their teacher had suggested they try if they want to practice the use of arrays. So we chose the first one.

Here’s what it said:

Ana and Maria are playing a game with cards with 5 digit numbers written…

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Exploratory testing – a rookie's thoughts (part 3)

Q: What other testing activities have you done besides pair testing?

 

A: Well, we also did something I named parallel testing, which involves less teamwork but can be just as engaging as pair testing. I’ll try to explain what this means using a similar analogy I used for pair testing. I compared pair testing to a car ride, where one tester is the driver, while the other is a passenger in the same car. Parallel testing is similar, with both testers being drivers (both with their own keyboard/computer), in slightly different cars (this can vary between using different browsers/OSs/computer configurations), driving parallel to each other (testing the same piece of software/section of application), with a communication link between them (both testers are within earshot of each other – in same office or room)…

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Exploratory testing – a rookie’s thoughts (part 2)

Q: How about reporting issues? How did you go about logging bugs while pair testing?
A: Logging the bugs we found took longer than expected. This means, that we found something, determined that it was a bug, investigated its cause, then spent too much time logging the said bug (even if we agreed on the cause and the effect of the bug, as well as on the steps to reproduce it); I guess you could say we didn’t agree on what information to include in the report, what order was the most appropriate, and what was relevant as far as that particular bug was concerned…
I don’t have a concrete example for this, but I seem to recall logging a tricky bug that overlapped with another one and my testing partner suggested adding information from one bug in the other’s report, while it was clear – to me at least – that the piece of information they wanted to add was not relevant to the bug report at hand. I realize this is quite biased, seeing that this is only my side of the story I suppose….

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Exploratory testing – a rookie’s thoughts (part 1)

Here are some of my thoughts in the form of questions and answers, which mostly come from feedback I gave Alex and Oana on exploratory testing when I first started out as a tester, and although much has changed since, I still have a lot to learn in order to become better at my craft… Enjoy! 😀

Q: So… pair testing; comparing the experience to testing alone, what are the things you did differently when testing with someone else?

A: Pair testing? Err… don’t you mean peer testing? Hm…

*thought about this for a while, then googled a bunch of stuff regarding peer/pair testing*

Okay, let me try to explain why naming it peer testing makes sense to me: …

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James Bach on Testing – 1 day workshop in Cluj-Napoca – Romania.

I am happy to announce that James Bach will be hosting a workshop on testing on October 25th in Cluj Napoca. Here you can find more information and register for this event.
We also encourrage anyone who isn’t from Cluj-Napoca/Romania to contact us if they want to take part in the workshop – I am confident we can help them find reasonable options for accommodation.
Alex

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