Tag Archives | Crowdsourcing

Vote For uTest – Discover The Keys to Crowdsourcing @ E2.0 Conference #e2conf

E2.0_vote_test3 copyYou may have noticed that many top reporters and bloggers included “crowdsourcing” as a top trend of 2009. In fact, The New York Times named it 2009’s verb of the year!

But what will separate crowdsourcing’s winners and losers in 2010?  We believe that crowdsourcing success lies in a company’s ability to engage its community in unique and meaningful ways. These are the crowdsourcing companies that are changing the way work is done today — transforming professional services like software testing forever. But how does a company go beyond building a “mob” or a “crowd” and develop a community?

VOTE HERE to learn more about how crowdsourcing is changing the way work is done.

We’d love the opportunity to share our hard-earned keys to building a successful crowdsourcing business at this year’s Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Boston. But first, we need your help! (Very quick registration required.)

You can see a snapshot of uTest’s proposed presentation on the voting site. Voting opens today and closes on January 20th. As always, thanks for your continued support. All of our success stems from our amazing community!

Quick Update: If you’re posting online, #e2conf is the official tag! To track votes, click here.

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Which E-Tailer Do You Trust? (Battle of the E-Tailers in the News!)

Breaking news! This week, we officially announced the results of our Q4 Bug Battle – Battle of the E-Tailers – along with a few prominent media outlets, including USA Today, Fast Company, Mashable! and eWeek.

Curious about the results? Check out the articles below:

So, the battle begs the question: Which e-tailer do you trust the most?

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Crowdsourcing Reaches New Heights

DARPA BalloonUp there — it’s a bird… it’s a plane… Nope, it’s just the latest experiment to measure the ability of crowdsourcing to organize, mobilize, collaborate and compete.

DARPA (who along with Al Gore, invented the Internet), announced that it will place a large, red balloon at 10 different locations around the U.S.   The DARPA Network Challenge calls on groups to locate each of 10 red weather balloons scattered around the country — with $40,000 in prize money being awarded to the first team to accurately identify them all.

The purpose of this contest is to discover how social networking, crowdsourcing and other technologies can help accomplish a large-scale, time-critical task.  Already teams are forming, money is being spent, and the social media universe is abuzz about the competition, which launches on Saturday, December 5th.

Want to know more?  Check out what CNN, CNET, the Wall Street Journal and Scientific American have to say about the competition.

So if you see a big red orb tomorrow morning, call me!  And if nothing else, at least a Google search for the term “balloon” will return something other than another article on the plight of Balloon Boy!

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Media Wrap-Up From Our Latest Trip To The Valley

uTest was on fire at Under the Radar Mobility this year. I think Under the Radar said it best!

For anyone looking to deploy an app across multiple mobile platforms and a gazillion different handsets, one massive problem awaits them: QA. uTest solves this problem with an army of testers across the world. Crowdsourced QA… Problem solved. (Click here to see Doron’s presentation.)

And that’s not all! Doron was able to connect with multiple partners, prospects and top media outlets, including Mashable’s Ben Parr (@benparr), editor in chief at IntoMobile.com Will Park (@willpark), ReadWriteWeb’s Dana Oshiro (@suzyperplexus), as well as participated in a couple great video interviews with bnetTV’s Michelle Sklar (@bnettv) and GoMo News’ Cian O’Sullivan (@gomonews) which are posted below!

Take a peek at the video interviews below to learn more:

Doron Reuveni-CEO of uTest speaks with bnetTV.com at the Under the Radar event.

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uTest CEO Presents at Google Test Automation Conference (GTAC)

As promised, Google has made the slides and video presentations from GTAC 2009 (Google Test Automation Conference) available on the GTAC website and on YouTube. This year’s GTAC was a huge success! The theme was “Testing for the Web,” and now anyone can watch these leading thinkers discuss test automation strategies, tools, and the challenges desktop and mobile environments present when creating web apps.

Doron was among a select group of speakers chosen to present at GTAC, including Microsoft, smartFOCUS Digital, Sauce Labs and of course Google, where he examined the complimentary role a community of professional testers plays in mobile testing.

Check out Doron’s presentation below! All other presentations can now be seen on YouTube.

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Testing the Limits with John Winsor

Having grilled some of the top minds in the software business, this installment of Testing the Limits will deviate johnwinsorslightly from the norm. With us this month is John Winsor – author, entrepreneur and crowdsourcing expert.

After a successful career as a journalist and magazine publisher, John founded Radar Communications in 1998, where he implemented a variety of academic-based market intelligence tools to help some of the country’s most progressive companies learn from key voices in their communities. Today, he offers that same advice as the VP/Executive Director of Strategy and Product Innovation at Crispin, Porter + Bogusky.

John has written extensively on the subject of crowdsourcing, having published the popular 2005 book Spark: Be more Innovative through Co-Creation. With his latest book Baked In: Creating Products and Businesses That Market Themselves now hitting the shelves, John was kind enough to sit down with us to discuss the future of crowdsourcing, the premise of his new book, and the best (or worst) rock-climbing movies of all-time.

uTest: The hottest debate in crowdsourcing right now is the “fall” of traditional advertising or design firms and the “rise” of crowdsourced services. In your opinion, what does the future of crowdsourcing look like? Is the world ready for what you call the “digital tsunami?”

JW: Well the future of crowdsourcing is definitely bright, but there are still a lot of unanswered questions in people’s minds. Those who are skeptical of crowdsourcing question its ability to truly connect people. With crowdsourcing, you no longer have all of these professionals working together in the same building – that alone is often too much for some people to come to terms with. The idea of a crowd aggregating to solve business problems in a virtual environment is entirely new to most people, even though the underlying trend has been developing for years. The difference now is that it simply can’t be ignored.

uTest: So you see crowdsourcing as eventually obtaining mainstream acceptance?

JW: Absolutely. People are starting to see the full potential of this model, especially on the client side of the equation. There was a time when most people viewed crowdsourcing as chaos – like the inmates running the asylum, and that’s no longer the case for a growing number of people. So I think we’re just getting started.

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Mobile App Market Blowing Up (in a good way)

By now, it’s painfully obvious to all of us that the market for mobile apps is BOOMING and shows no signs of slowing down.  But I was still amazed by the stats/news that back up the hype. Within the past few months, GigaOmsomanyapps has reported the following mind-blowing proof points:

  • Apple users downloaded 2 billion apps
  • Android’s Market will come pre-loaded on Verizon phones
  • Microsoft launched its Windows Marketplace for Mobile
  • Apple will hit shelves in China, the world’s largest market
  • Research In Motion (RIM) expanded with its new App World
  • Palm introduced premium apps for its webOS
  • Verizon is opening its own app store later this year

And the list goes on and on…

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Four Crowdsourcing Lessons from House MD

The doctor will see you now.House MD, one of the most popular television shows in the US and globally, is a weekly medical mystery where a patient with a rare and unsolvable disease is diagnosed by Dr. Gregory House – the title character.  Dr. House is a brilliant diagnostician who can solve almost any medical puzzle, but this past Monday the show featured an entirely different way of diagnosing a medical problem: crowdsourcing.  Over the course of the episode, House’s team dealt with many  advantages and disadvantages of crowdourcing while trying to diagnose a patient with a tricky disease.

Even though House is fiction, there’s a lot we can learn about crowdsourcing from the characters’ experiences.  Here are four of my favorite crowdsourcing lessons from House MD.  Be warned, MAJOR SPOILERS BELOW!  Stop reading now if you don’t want the episode spoiled for you.

Update: The full episode is now available for US viewers on Hulu.

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Crowdsourcing: Which Businesses Are Best Suited For It?

I read a great article in ebizQ last week outlining why crowdsourcing is no longer just for startups. Dion Hinchcliffe (@dhinchcliffe) writes:

Crowdsourcing B2B“While Internet startups have had considerable success with crowdsourcing, it’s only recently that they’ve focused on creating the tools and communities that can be readily consumed by enterprises.”

Crowdsourcing enables companies – from bootstrapped startups to global enterprises – to tap into the creativity and diversity of a global community of skilled professionals. Sounds great, so why is it better suited to some businesses and not others?

Well, with crowdsourced software testing for example, the crowd reflects the diversity (e.g. locations, languages spoken, hardware, software, etc.) of  the apps and the end users themselves. In the case of global software testing, the crowd is better suited than perhaps an outsourcing company without adequate testing coverage. This shift has empowered app companies to make the best decisions, on an on-demand basis, without sacrificing control, costs or quality.

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Testing the Limits with Jack Margo SVP of Developer Shed, (part 2)

logo_developershedToday, we’re wrapping up with our September ‘Testing the Limits’ with Jack Margo, SVP of Internet Operations at Developer Shed.  If you’re not familiar with them, Developer Shed operates 20+ tech sites — many devoted to open source products, developers and communities.  They serve millions of visitors per month, for every breed of developer or open source project.

Today, we talk about the future of crowdsourcing, whether mobile apps are stealing web apps’ mojo, and who would win in a fight between the Agile methodology and a recession.  Also, Jack causes everyone to look up the word “bifurcated“.  In case you missed it, check out Friday’s part 1 of the interview with Jack.

uTest: This question was recently posed by blogger Andy Beal: “Crowdsourcing is hot now, but will participation fatigue set in?”
J: Sure.  And Facebook is a fad.  And Twitter won’t last 6 months.  I’ve seen crowdsourcing in action… and a good friend of mine, Chuck Lin, has used a site called crowdspring.com to get a ton of great, affordable designs.  People in our industry are motivated by three things – Money, Notoriety and Discover.  Crowdsourcing, by it’s nature, filters out the not-so-good and leaves you with the best ideation that a group of collaborating individuals can provide.  (Editor’s note: we heart crowdSPRING too!)

uTest: Some have suggested that the focus on mobile apps will weaken web applications. Any truth to this, in your opinion?
J: Not at all.  It’s just a different methodology to the build itself, but there are ample developers and specialists to go around.  I’ve not done a lot of mobile application development but the ramp up of something like Objective-C (one of the most crazy languages, in my opinion) is steep for most.  I think you’ll see a convergence when Android and other phones start to offer Flash as a development platform.  The main weakening, if there is one, is mainly from adhoc rules that cell phone manufacturers impose.  Make a phone that can run PHP applications, and you’ll have a ton of web/mobile-app developers.  Likewise, make a website that can run on Objective-C and you’ll get the converse.  It’s one’s chosen discipline, but I definitely do not see a weak web app dev community.  Bifurcated?  Yes.  But not weaker.

uTest: Which development methodology (waterfall, agile, XP, etc) has the brightest future?

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Version 2.6: uTest Unveils New And Improved Tester Profile

The uTest dev team has been busy (and sleep-deprived) of late.  Last night, we released version 2.6 of our platform, which contains our new and vastly improved tester profile. This will enable us to more precisely match our customers’ testing projects with the right members of the global community.

And for testers, it means we can do a much better job of inviting you to the the releases that match your location, languages, hardware, software, preferences and experience.  It will also translate into fewer emails hitting your inbox and more projects that are relevant to you. Since this revamped tester profile is such a big leap forward, we’re requiring all of our testers to complete it before they can participate in future testing projects.  It’s a simple 4-step process and takes just a few minutes!

If you’re already a uTester, please re-profile here. Not yet a part of the world’s largest community of software testers? You can sign up in minutes right here. Want to see the goods? Here’s what the new tester profile looks like:

Step 1 of 4:  Getting Started
We start by capturing the basic info from new testers (current testers will see this screen already filled out the next time they sign in).

Getting Started

Step 2 of 4:  Personal Info
Here we capture some demographic information (particularly important for usability testing).  Also, testers can now specify which types testing they want to do (functional, usability, load & performance). Speak multiple languages? Be sure to let us know that too!

Personal Information

Step 3 of 4:  Hardware and Software
As our customers and their apps get bigger and more mature, they’re asking for more specific hardware/software requirements every day.  So add all of your computers, mobile devices, gaming consoles, MP3 players, etc. to your profile and you’ll never miss out on a release again.

Hardware and Software

Step 3A:  Web and Desktop Devices
Here you can specify your computer details, including your OS, version, language, anti-virus and anti-spyware information. You can add multiple computers and update this information at any time (when you buy a new computer, upgrade your OS, download a new browser or anti-virus program).

Web and Desktop Devices

Step 3B:  Mobile Devices
As our list of mobile customers expands dramatically, we’re constantly looking for more mobile testers with different device makers, models, wireless carriers and locations. Again, you can add multiple mobile devices and update your profile at any time.  Our new profiles will enable us to find the right testers for each project with no wasted time.

Mobile Devices

Step 3C:  Gaming and Other Devices
Additionally, specify what types of gaming consoles, MP3 players and digital readers you currently own.

Gaming and Other Devices

Step 4 of 4:  Experience and Skills
Our testers have a wide range of industry experience, hobbies and skills.  Now you can tell us about your expertise and interests.

Experience and Skills

This revamped tester profile is a major event in the history of uTest and its community.  There’s much, much more to come, but this new version further extends our lead in the world of crowdsourced software testing.

Have thoughts, feedback or unabashed praise?  We’d love to hear ’em in the comments below!  uTesters can also join the lively discussion on this topic (and many, many others) in our software testing forums.

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uTest Wins 2009 WebAward for “Outstanding Website”

WebAward 2009I’m thrilled to let you know that last week uTest was internationally recognized, wining the 2009 WebAward for “Outstanding Website” by the Web Marketing Association.

A big thank you to our partner Boston Interactive for helping us incorporate a more human face to uTest’s website and revamping it to reflect uTest’s community-centric business model.

As you know, we relaunched our website back in May 2009, and four months later, we’re already receiving high honors for it! Now in its 13th year, the WebAwards is the premier annual website award competition that names the best websites while setting the standard of excellence for all website development.

During this year’s competition, more than 2,000 sites from 45 countries were nominated in 96 industry categories. Entries were judged on design, copy writing, innovation, content, interactivity, navigation, and use of technology.

The new uTest website has enabled us to bring the real-world stories of our customers and testers to the forefront of the web experience to increase visibility into uTest’s global testing community of 19,000+ and enhance collaboration among software professionals worldwide. We’re honored to be among this year’s winners!

To see all 2009 award wins, check out uTest’s Awards Page!

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