STARWEST 2009 - Software Testing Conference


STARWEST 2009: Test Process Improvement on a Shoestring

In these times of economic crisis, cost reduction is usually the number one motive for test process improvement. Although improvement models such as TMMi® and TPI® are very popular, they require formal assessments, process change working groups, extensive implementation programs, and new organizational structures. Instead, you can quickly implement measures that improve your testing process incrementally within your day-to-day activities.

Martin Pol, POLTEQ IT Services BV

STARWEST 2009: Testing AJAX Applications

Because Web application development using AJAX, REST, and service-oriented architectures is expanding at a breakneck pace, testers must learn to develop unit tests, functional tests, and load tests for these environments. At the same time, even though IT budgets are tighter than ever before, testing cannot be compromised. But there is some good news-open-source test tools can offer a strong alternative to traditional, commercial testing tools. Frank Cohen demonstrates how to navigate the new possibilities offered by open source.

Frank Cohen, PushToTest
STARWEST 2009: The Irrational Tester

As a tester or test manager, you probably have wondered just how important reasoning and rational thinking actually are in many management decisions. It seems that many decisions are influenced by far more-or far less-than thoughtful analysis. Surprise! Testers make decisions every day that are just as irrational as those made by the managers about whom they complain.

James Lyndsay, Workroom Productions, Ltd.
STARWEST 2009: The Marine Corps Principles of Leadership

Even with the best tools and processes in the world, if your staff is not focused and productive, your testing efforts will be weak and ineffective and your finished product will reflect this. Retired Marine Colonel, long-time test consultant Rick Craig describes how using the Marine Corps Principles of Leadership will help you become a better leader and, as a result, a better test manager or tester. Learn the differences between leadership and management and how they can complement each other.

Rick Craig, Software Quality Engineering

System Integration Testing of Portable Devices

System integration testing of portable devices delivered as part of a larger system is often not recognized by project managers, developers, and even some testers as a critical component of the testing effort. Because portable devices require several embedded applications working together to meet functional expectations, much of the testing effort must include system integration tests. Often, testers do not have experience with portable devices, and, in particular, how to test the complete, integrated system with the devices.

JeanAnn Harrison, CardioNet, Inc.
Test Automation Objectives

Test automation efforts frequently fail because of unrealistic expectations, often the result of choosing poor objectives for automation. Dorothy Graham explains the pitfalls of a number of commonly-held objectives for automation and describes characteristics of good automation objectives. These objectives seem sensible at first and are common in organizations-find more bugs, run regression tests overnight and weekends, reduce testing staff, reduce elapsed time for testing, and automate x% of the testing.

Dorothy Graham, Consultant

Test Environments: The Weakest Link in Your Testing Chain

Test environments are an important part of our testing portfolio, yet often we seem to spend very little time planning, creating, and maintaining them. Julie Gardiner explains the reasons we fail to build test environments that are realistic, reliable, representative, and have integrity. As a result, they become the weakest link in our testing process. Julie provides examples of environments-good, bad, and sometimes ugly-and shares why the ugly are often a symptom of the organization's disregard for testing.

Julie Gardiner, Grove Consultants

Test Planning: Defining Boundaries and Setting Expectations

Is testing often the last thing considered in your projects? Does your test team always seem out of the loop? Then, Jane Fraser can help you. She describes a process in which testers focus on reaching consensus with the whole project team. With Jane's approach, you work through the requirements and design to document what you plan to test, how you plan to test, and a most important element-what you are NOT going to test.

Jane Fraser, Electronic Arts

Testing Lessons from Classic Fairy Tales

Once upon a time, in testing conferences not so long ago, Rob Sabourin presented useful testing lessons from the most unlikely sources: the Looney Tunes gang, the Great Detectives, Dr. Seuss, Hollywood movies, the game of baseball, Monty Python, labor and delivery nursing, and the Simpsons. Now he turns his attention to lessons from classic fairy tales, those timeless fables designed to entertain and teach simple moral truths to children that also have important lessons for testers.

Robert Sabourin,, Inc.

Testing the Client and the Cloud

Today, a large portion of computing is moving off the desktop, out of the organization, and into the cloud. Services such as, Microsoft's Online Businesses, and Oracle's On Demand provide both IT and line-of-business application support outside the corporate IT infrastructure.'s S3 service and Microsoft's Azure platform provide cloud infrastructures while Google Apps and Star Office are attempting to supplant the classic desktop applications.

Ken Johnston, Microsoft Corporation


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