When You Should Choose Manual vs. Automated Testing

ibook-software-developmentThe following is a guest post to the uTest Blog by Eli Lopian of Typemock.

QA analysts and IT firms are often confronted with the same question when testing a software project — whether to go with manual software testing options or to try out new automated techniques.

In certain situations, there are clear advantages to working with automated software testing solutions, and other times the automated software technology is too leading-edge and could wind up costing you way more than it’s worth. That’s why it’s essential to weigh the costs and benefits according to each project.

Manual Software Testing 

Manual Software Testing is the process of going in and running each individual program or series of tasks and comparing the results to the expectations, in order to find the defects in the program. Essentially, manual testing is using the program as the user would under all possible scenarios, and making sure all of the features act appropriately.

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Google Test Automation Conference: Video From Days 1 & 2

The Google Test Automation Conference (GTAC) is an annual test automation conference hosted by Google, bringing together engineers to discuss advances in test automation and the test engineering computer science field.

GTAC 2014 was recently held just a few weeks ago at Google’s Kirkland office (Washington State, US), and we’re happy to present video of talks and topics from both days of the conference.

If 15-plus hours of video below just isn’t enough, be sure to also check out all of our Automation courses available at uTest University today.

Selenium: 10 Years Later and Still Going Strong

In the field of testing technologies, it isn’t very often that we see a tool survive and grow richer in over a decade. Just recently, Selenium completed 10 years, and this article takes a look at the ecosystem that Selenium has nurtured.tw-blog-promo-tile-120x120

Agile and Selenium

The agile manifesto has been around longer than Selenium, and more teams are looking towards the agile form of software development to reduce their feedback cycles and practice continuous delivery. One of the practices that teams need to do well when working the agile way, is test automation.

Test automation may seem easy — but in order for it to be truly effective, the team needs to have a lot of discipline in defining their process, choosing the right tools and technologies to give that quick feedback by running various types of tests (smoke, regression, etc.), and also allow the test automation to evolve and scale.

That said, even today, completing test automation in the same iteration along with development is a huge challenge for most teams. These challenges get aggravated and more apparent when test automation uses tools and technologies that are difficult to keep in sync with the rapidly changing product.

It was 2004 when Jason Huggins, while testing an internal application at ThoughtWorks, created a JavaScriptTestRunner that changed the way automating the browser (browser-based-testing) is done. This then evolved into “Selenium” which was subsequently made open source.

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Are You Getting the Most Value Out of Automated Testing?

Note: The following is a guest submission to the uTest Blog from Sanjay Zalavadia.

Using automation testing wisely will allow your QA or testing teams to run more efficiently and reduce production times.

On paper, automated testing sounds like a potential solution to the many — and I stress many – challenging demands that QA management has to contend with on a regular basis. Balancing the need to reduce production costs and time while still releasing a high-quality product is no easy task, and yet, this has become a common expectation of development teams across the world.

Automated software testing promises to limit the number of runs that a QA team needs to manually execute during the production cycle. A well-constructed test script can analyze code more quickly and accurately than a manual tester ever could, and it can be reused for later projects if it proves to be particularly effective.

However, it’s not all sunshine and lollipops with automated testing; the tech is by no means a silver bullet for quality assurance concerns. But if managers are smart about how they incorporate these tools, they can take some of the burden off their test teams and create a more efficient production process.

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Authors in Testing Q&A: Dorothy Graham Talks ‘Experiences of Test Automation’

Dorothy (Dot) Graham has been in software testing for 40 years, and is co-author of four books, including two on test automation (with Mark DG-photoFewster).

She was programme chair for EuroSTAR twice and is a popular speaker at international conferences. Dot has been on the boards of publications, conferences and qualifications in software testing. She was awarded the European Excellence Award in Software Testing in 1999 and the first ISTQB Excellence Award in 2012. You can visit her at her website.

In this Q&A, uTest spoke with Dot about her experiences in automation, its misconceptions, and some of her favorite stories from her most recent book which she co-authored, ‘Experiences of Test Automation: Case Studies of Software Test Automation.’ Stay tuned at the end of the interview for chapter excerpt previews of the book, along with an exclusive discount code to purchase.

uTest: Could you tell us a little more about the path that brought you to automation?

Dorothy Graham: That’s easy – by accident! My first job was at Bell Labs and I was hired as a programmer (my degrees were in Maths, there weren’t many computer courses back in the 1970s). I was put into a testing team for a system that processed signals from hydrophones, and my job was to write test execution and comparison utilities (as they were called then, not tools).

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Video Roundup: The Best of the Selenium Conference

The 2014 edition of the Selenium Conference in Bangalore, India, just wrapped up this weekend, bringing automation fans from around the world together for three days of workshops and networking.

While there’s sure to be some video rounded up soon for Selenium developers and automation enthusiasts who couldn’t make it this weekend (which we’ll share with our automation community), we’ve rounded up some of the great presentations from the 2013 edition of the show.

According to the Selenium Conference, the show is a volunteer-run, non-profit event presented by members of the Selenium Community. The goal of the conference is to bring together Selenium developers & enthusiasts from around the world to share ideas, socialize, and work together on advancing the present and future success of the project.

Beyond just automation, be sure to also check out uTest’s entire Events Calendar, your one stop for all events — virtual and live — covering the testing spectrum.

Simon Stewart, Selenium State of the Union

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New Testing Tools Added to uTest Include Those in Automation, Screen Mirroring

Thanks to our great community, over the past month at uTest, we’ve added more than 30 tools to our ever-expanding library of Software Testing Tools, including those in security, automation and even screen mirroring.

The Tool Reviews section of uTest is your one-stop shop to rate, review and discuss the tools that are supposed to make testers’ lives (hey, that’s you!) easier. Here’s just a small sampling of the tools being talked about by our community over the past 30 days:

Testomato Untitled13 Untitled16 TestFairy_MainUntitled12
uTest has designed Tool Reviews to be the place where testers can make educated decisions on the tools that may become a part of their daily routine, and to see which tools have won the hearts — or the ire — of their testing peers. If we’re ever missing your favorite test tool, be sure to submit it to us, and we’ll add it right away so you can leave the first review!

Focus on Automated Testing, Discount for uTesters at UCAAT

Automation is a sector of software testing that has experienced explosive growth and enterprise investment in recent years. The knowledge necessary to learn about and specialize in automated testing is found at industry events like the upcoming 2nd annual User Conference on Advanced Automated Testing (UCAAT) in Munich, Germany from September 16-18, 2014. ucaat

The European conference, jointly organized by the “Methods for Testing and Specification” (TC MTS) ETSI Technical Committee, QualityMinds, and German Testing Day, will focus exclusively on use cases and best practices for software and embedded testing automation.

The 2014 program will cover topics like agile test automation, model-based tests, test languages and methodologies, as well as web of service and use of test automation in various industries like automotive, medical technology, and security, to name a few. Noted participants in the opening session include Dr. Andrej Pietschker (Giesecke & Devrient), Professor Ina Schieferdecker (Free University of Berlin), Markus Becher (BMW), Dr. Heiko Englert (Siemens), and Dr. Alexander Pretschner (Technical University of Munich).

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Automation in Testing the Subject of Latest Engaging STP Podcast

uTest has always had a strong relationship with the Software Test Professionals (STP) community as attendees and sponsors of STP’s twice-a-year STPCon conferences in the US, some of the largest shows in the testing industry.

This week, STP brings us pre-recorded testing fun in the form of a podcast. Testing expert Richard Bradshaw talks with STP on the subject of automation in testing. Specifically, Richard gets into where automation comes into play as a manual tester, and how managers can build successful teams comprised of developers and both manual and automated testers, and keep everything running smoothly.

Check out the full audio of the great STP interview below.

Learn the Basics of Selenium at uTest University

Selenium is a free, open source suite of tools to automate web browsers across many platforms. Selenium is popular among testers as a  powerful and robust automation testing tool.
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You can now learn the basics of Selenium through this 8-part course at uTest University (uTu) authored by Alex Siminiuc:

You can also easily add the series to your To-Do List by going to the course tracks page and selecting the Selenium Basics track.

If you’re already using Selenium, be sure to rate and review this tool in our Tool Reviews section so that other testers in the community will know what you love (or don’t love) about it.

uTu is free for all members of the uTest Community. We are constantly adding to our course catalog to keep you educated on the latest topics and trends. If you are an expert in UX, load & performance, security, or mobile testing, you can share your expertise with the community by authoring a uTu course. Contact the team at university@utest.com for more information.