Safety Language in Software Testing: Why It’s Not OK to Deal in Absolutes

Of course this has been tested. This is definitely working as it should be. images

How many times has a tester or developer uttered these words to only have them come back and haunt them? Or worse, lose credibility? As a tester, it seems like a no-brainer to use CYA language in your everyday work. Heck, one just has to look to prolific software tester James Bach’s recent talk at CAST to figure that out (“I’m reluctant to say ‘pass.’ I’d rather say, I don’t see a problem as far as I can tell”).

But is “safety language,” such as ‘it seems to be’ versus ‘it is,’ something that should be a part of every tester’s skillset? Gold-rated tester on paid projects and uTest Forums Moderator Milos Dedijer seems to think so. It was a discussion topic that recently cropped up in the uTest Forums:

Some time ago, I had an argument with my team lead about my use of safety language. I tend to use it in any argument, and I believe that it’s a good practice. I don’t use it in my factual reports, but I do use it frequently in my descriptive reports. For example, if I say that a set of steps has been executed I don’t use safety language to report results, but if I say that a certain feature has been tested I use safety language almost all of the time. Using safety language to preserve uncertainty appears to be one of the skills a tester must have.

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Applause Announces the Ovation Awards: Vote for Your Favorite Apps

As testers working with hundreds of apps each year, you probably already have a good idea which ones stand out in the pack. Now’s your chance to letovationLogoLeftBlack that be known to the world.

360-degree App Quality company Applause is excited to announce The Ovation Awards, the only app awards that measure what brands & developers truly seek: the love and loyalty of users and experts.

We’re looking to you not only as testers, but as app users, to vote for your favorite apps from a list of 200 finalists across 10 categories (and across both iOS and Android). We have a panel of expert judges who will be poring over your selections and making their decisions. Here’s the timeline of the awards:

  • Public voting: Nov 12 – Dec 14 – Vote for your favorite apps – vote for just one, or vote for 20 (one per category per OS) from our pool of 200 finalists. This is a big part of what our panel of expert judges will consider.
  • Judging – Our panel includes accomplished mobile engineers, journalists, CEOs and others who understand apps inside and out. Oh, and that means testers, too. You may recognize long-time uTesters Lena Houser, Allyson Burk and Michael Larsen who are also on our esteemed panel! The judges will look at YOUR votes –  as well as the analytics used by our in-house team of data scientists to help decide the 200 finalists – in order to choose the winners across 10 categories and the overall grand prize winner for each operating system.
  • Winners: Announced January 14, 2015 – The winner for each category + OS will be announced, as will the grand-prize, overall winners for iOS and Android.

Let your voice ring loud and clear. Be sure to vote today for your favorite apps in the Ovation Awards!

Authors in Testing Q&A With Mobile Tester Daniel Knott

Daniel Knott has been in software development and testing since 2008, working for companies including IBM, Accenture, XING and AOE. He is currently a Software Daniel KnottTest Manager at AOE GmbH in Germany where he is responsible for test management and automation in mobile and Web projects. He is also a frequent speaker at various Agile conferences and now a published author. You can find him over at his blog or on Twitter @dnlkntt.

In this uTest interview, Daniel explains the biggest mobile testing pain points that come up in his user groups, and gives us a preview of recently released book, Hands-On Mobile App Testing. At the conclusion of the interview, you’ll also receive a link to an exclusive discount for the purchase of the book.

uTest: You’ve been involved in software testing in general, but what specifically drew you into mobile testing?

Daniel Knott: Back in 2011 when I was working at XING AG in Hamburg as a software tester for web applications, I had the chance to switch to the XING mobile team to establish the QA processes. Working on this team was a great experience. I had the chance to build up a test automation framework for Android and iOS from scratch and establish a mobile testing process. I was also free to try several things out to find the right tools and workflow for my company and the development environment. This time and experience was just awesome and convinced me to focus on the mobile world.

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uTest Partner BlazeMeter Hosts Performance Testing with JMeter Webinar

JMeter is the leading open source load performance testing tool, and cloud-based performance testing provider BlazeMeter will be hosting a live1_blazemeterbanner webinar next week giving testers and developers everything they need to run performance testing with the popular tool.

In this webinar on Wednesday, November 19, at 1pm Eastern Time, BlazeMeter’s Ophir Prusak will cover all of the vast capabilities and lesser known limitations of the popular open source load tool. The session will consist of three parts:

  • How to run performance testing with JMeter. Learn best practices, tips, and what you can and can’t do with JMeter.
  • Why it’s worth using BlazeMeter with JMeter. Learn the benefits and additional features you can get by running performance tests through BlazeMeter.
  • Live Q&A. Ask Ophir your questions about JMeter or BlazeMeter.

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Top Tweets from Better Software and Agile Development Conference East

As I wipe the frost off of my car and see my breath in the cold New England air, I’m especially envious of the folks down in Orlando this week for the Better Software and Agile Development East Conferences.

Testing and development professionals that registered for one of the two shows running concurrently this week received access to both the Better Software and Agile Development conferences, held at the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista in Orlando, Fla., November 9-14.

The Agile Development Conference has been recognized for bringing together prominent thought leaders in the agile universe, while the Better Software Conference encompasses the entire software development life cycle, and true to its name, covers learning how to build better software. All week, both conferences have boasted keynotes featuring recognized thought leaders, in-depth tutorials and an expo floor with the latest software development and testing solutions.

For those unable to make it down to sunny Orlando this week for the 2-for-1 conference, here are some of the top tweets from the shows using the hashtag #BSCADC.

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Meet the uTesters: Mikko Salamaki

Mikko Salamaki hails from Finland and is a Gold-rated tester and Test Team Lead on paid projects at uTest. He currently works as a Testing Specialist in his daM_facey job, and has been involved in several roles in software testing over the past 15 years, including beginning as a test designer. Mikko has also been a uTester for over 3 1/2 years.

Be sure to also follow Mikko’s profile on uTest as well so you can stay up to date with his activity in the community!

uTest: What drew you into testing initially? What’s kept you at it?

Mikko: Well, it was a bit of an accident, really, as my studies would have been more suitable for network router configuration or such roles. However, I got a summer job at a small mobile phone developer as a tester, and when I graduated, got a permanent job there, and realized that it was actually something I really liked to do. I still love to help companies increase their software quality, which is why I tend to shift place every few years.

uTest: What’s your go-to gadget?

Mikko: I’d say the number one gadget is my Lumia phone which is always somewhere close by, but I usually add Samsung Galaxy Note 10″ to the mix for heavier stuff (like uTest TTL work) if I’m not at home.

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State of the (u)Testers: Software Testing Careers Survey

little-uWhat got your peers into testing? What are their biggest pain points on their testing teams? Are they seeing any career advancement from their software testing certifications?

uTest has never conducted a study of its community members who have testing as their full-time careers…that is, until now. By launching our State of the uTesters software testing careers survey, we hope to give our testers a better picture of their peers’ testing careers — what motivates them, their testing aspirations and some of the biggest pain points in their organizations.

But the data will only be as good as the participation, so send in your responses today if you’re interested in what your testing peers have to say. We will also be selecting a  couple of random participants for a uTest t-shirt from all entries. The survey should take just 10-15 minutes and will be open for submissions until Monday, November 24. We will be publishing the results of this study here on the uTest Blog in December.


uTest Platform Feature Announcement: Duplicate Bug Warning

In the spirit of continuous improvement, we here in uTest Community Management wanted to share with you another great feature brought to you by our fantastic development team.

Today, we rolled out a Duplicate Bug Warning feature. Now, when testers are participating in paid projects and begin to file a bug, it will automatically search for keywords within the cycle’s Issue Reports and prompt the Tester with a list of possible duplicates for review.

bug warning

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Top Tweets from STPCon Fall 2014

The Fall 2014 edition of STPCon (Software Test Professionals Conference) is winding down after three days of keynotes, sessions and workshops on topics including agile testing, performance testing, test automation, mobile application testing, and test team leadership and management.

Speakers this week have included Keith Klain, Mike Lyles, Mark Tomlinson, Carlene Wesemeyer, JeanAnn Harrison and Applause’s own Chris Munroe.

Don’t worry if you weren’t at the show or didn’t get a chance to stop by and see us at the Applause/uTest booth (while it saddens us, we won’t hold it against you…for too long, anyways). We’ve got you covered with some of the most inspiring, quotable, memorable — and just flat out funny — tweets from the show that were tagged with #STPcon:

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Authors in Testing Q&A With Agile Testing Champion Lisa Crispin

Lisa Crispin was voted the Most Influential Agile Testing Professional Person at Agile Testing Days 2012 by her peers, and enjoys working asCrispinDonkey a tester with an awesome agile team. She shares her experiences via writing, presenting, teaching and participating in agile testing communities around the world.

She is also the author and contributor of numerous software testing books, including her latest, released in October and co-authored with Janet Gregory, More Agile Testing: Learning Journeys for the Whole Team. You can learn more about Lisa’s work on her site, and follow her on Twitter @lisacrispin.

In this uTest interview, Lisa explains the reality of agile adoption and suggests ways teams can succeed with agile.

uTest: Where have companies or teams gone most wrong when rolling out agile in their organizations?

Lisa Crispin: Many organizations don’t understand that to succeed at software development, we have to focus on delivering the best possible quality, rather than focusing on speed. Too many think that “agile” means “fast.” You need a big investment in time and training so that teams learn important practices such as TDD, CI, specification by example/behavior-driven development, helping business stakeholders identify the most valuable features, and so on. Teams that don’t nurture a learning culture where failure is tolerated, experiments are supported, and the team has diversity, accumulate too much technical debt and fail.

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