Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Software Tester Attributes

A watched a Microsoft webinar today about a new test tool integrated into Visual Studio, Test Professional 2010. I like that they are attempting to make a tool for the way most of us work, not asking us to work the way an expensive tool requires. (You had us spend all that money you damn well better use the tool.)

They had a slide in the introduction that listed attributes of a professional software tester that pretty much describes us.

Background & Motivations

  • Typically does not have any formal CS training or background [not me]
  • Quite often was once a user of the product being tested [not me]
  • Sense of achievement comes from making users lives easier
  • Feels like the customer advocate
  • Likes tracking down hard-to-find bugs
  • Competes with developers [don't understand this]
  • Has no desire to become a developer [been there, done that, no thanks]

Focus & Approach

  • Driven by requirements
  • Assessing quality
  • Scope is user centered and scenario driven
  • Often exploratory or ad-hoc
  • Likes to be able to spend time with users
  • Finding bugs, not running tests
  • Tests defensively [test then code]
  • Provides detailed and accurate bug reports
  • Dislikes ambiguity

Authoring Tests

  • Automation for repetitive tasks
  • Elucidate designs
  • Hand-on approach to catch unforeseen bugs
  • Doesn't believe in 100% automation [$$$ from Nigeria]
  • Wants tools that help find bugs
  • Creates flexible, reusable tests
  • May not always use formal test cases to find bugs
  • Always looks for opportunities to find bugs

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