STARWEST 2009 - Software Testing Conference


Managing a Globally Distributed Test Organization

Although many businesses have successfully outsourced software development and testing activities, managing a truly globally distributed test organization comes with a unique set of challenges. Traditional test processes often break down under the pressure of multiple time zones, varying cultures, and numerous technology issues. Communicating standard test procedures, managing exit criteria, and determining release readiness are all more difficult.

Anu Kak, PayPal
Managing a Successful User Acceptance Test

It's just days before you plan to go live with the new system. The User Acceptance Test (UAT) is the only thing that stands in the way. Will it be successful? Will the users devote the time they committed to so long ago to perform the tests? Will there be agreement among the users about whether the system is "acceptable" to them?-"It doesn't do what I want" vs. "It meets the specifications." Sara Jones describes strategies that empower test teams and users to plan and execute an efficient UAT.

Sara Jones, SAIC
Maximize Your Investment in Automation Tools

Experience has shown that many organizations attempt to automate their testing processes without effective vision, planning, and follow through. As a result, within a year or two, test automation efforts are declared worthless and the tools are moved to the shelf. By creating a centralized team with domain expertise and identifying specific test automation needs, Intuit is able to build, deploy, and test products using a common set of tools, processes, and methodologies they call Autolab.

Shoba Raj, Intuit, Inc.
Moving to an Agile Testing Environment: What Went Right, What Went Wrong

About a year ago, Ray Arell called his software staff together and declared, "Hey! We are going agile!" Ray read an agile project management book on a long flight to India, and, like all good reactionary development managers, he was sold! Now-two years later-their agile/Scrum process has taken shape; however, its adoption was not without strain on development, test, and other QA practices.

Ray Arell, Intel Corporation

Offshoring Test Automation: Double Benefit or Double Backlash

Although software testing can be an exciting challenge, testers often are bogged down in voluminous, manual testing and re-testing with relatively shallow requirements-based test cases. This old approach costs projects time and money while stealing resources away from more creative testing. Organizations look at two ways to reduce these repetitive testing costs-automation and offshoring. Combining these two approaches has the promise of even more savings to the organization.

Hans Buwalda, LogiGear Corporation

Seven Factors for Agile Testing Success

What do testers need to do differently to be successful on an agile project? How can agile development teams employ testers’ skills and experience for maximum value to the project? Janet Gregory describes the seven key factors she has discovered for testers to succeed on agile teams. She explains the whole-team approach of agile development that enables testers to do their job more effectively. Then, Janet explores the “agile testing mindset” that contributes to a tester’s success.

Janet Gregory, DragonFire Inc.

Six Budget Killers for Testing Organizations

You already have taken some basic cost-cutting steps and saved your organization money. Now, you are asked to dig even deeper into your testing budget. Where should you start? You may be looking right at the areas to address and not know what you are seeing or what to do about them. Paul Trompeter explains how to take a fresh look at your existing hardware components, re-examine reliability and availability requirements, and prepare for a future scalable environment.

Paul Trompeter, GDI Infotech
STARWEST 2009: Performance Engineering: More Than Just Load Testing

Performance testing that is only done at the last minute, just prior to launch, is not the right approach for systems that are highly complex with many opportunities for bottlenecks. Rex Black discusses a different approach-performance engineering-that is far more than performing load testing during the system test. Performance engineering takes a broad look at the environment, platforms, and development processes, and how they affect a system's ability to perform at different load levels on different hardware and networks.

Rex (Red) Black, Expedia, Inc.
STARWEST 2009: Resistance as a Resource: Moving Your Organization to Higher Quality

As a tester, you are an agent of change and a creative, intelligent, and insightful member of your team. You have good ideas about how to improve your organization and its products. You make your proposal. You hear: "We tried that before, and it didn't work"; "We've never done that before"; “That's not a bug, it works as designed"; and a chorus of "No real user would ever do something like that!" You're getting resistance. So, what do you do?

Dale Emery, Consultant

STARWEST 2009: Seven Habits of Highly Effective Automation Testers

In many organizations, test automation is becoming a specialized career path. Mukesh Mulchandani and Krishna Iyer identify seven habits of highly effective automation specialists and compare them with Stephen Covey’s classic "Seven Habits of Highly Effective People." Mukesh and Krishna not only describe behavior patterns of effective automation testers, but also discuss how to internalize these patterns so that you use them instinctively.

Mukesh Mulchandani, ZenTEST Labs


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