The Latest

Bret Pettichord on Test Automation[magazine]

Here is Bret Pettichord's collection of the most influential papers, books, and Web sites on software test automation. One benefit of reviewing various reports is that you're more likely to find one that is close to your own situation. All of these reports come from people who've done the work and have reported honestly about it.

Bret Pettichord's picture Bret Pettichord
The Bug You're Most Likely to Miss[magazine]

We all miss some bugs, but the bug you're most likely to miss is one that gives wrong results that might look right. Let's look at a famous and costly example, then we'll see what we can do during testing to avoid a similar disaster.

Bob Stahl
Nightly Builds: A Tester's Early Warning System[magazine]

We're all looking for an effective "Distant Early Warning" line of testing: a procedure that will minimize integration bugs, reduce the risk of low quality by allowing bugs to be caught early, make it easier to debug, and improve the visibility of the status of the system under test. One practice that meets those needs is the "nightly"—essentially a daily build and sanity test of the product.

Carla Oexmann
Project Politics[magazine]

Politics is often seen as a dirty business--but in the right hands it can be a way of bridging the gap between "I've got a great new project idea" and getting the right product into your customers' hands. Elizabeth Schmitz shares what she's learned about project politics.

Elizabeth Schmitz
A Look at PREfix by Intrinsa[magazine]

PREfix provides a source code simulation tool that is able to perform automatic review for a wide range of programming defects that lead to program crashes. Defects reported by PREfix include de-referencing NULL pointers, using uninitialized memory, leaking memory or resources, or using illegal values. Here is an analysis of the product.

Rodney Wilson
Tactical Project Management at a Startup[magazine]

Ulla Merz explains the role of a project manager at a startup company. She addresses topics such as requirements definition and project schedule; project status meetings; and establishing a change control board.

Ulla Merz
Walking the Fine Line between Helpful and Harmful[magazine]

Jeff Johnson examines user interface problems caused by designers trying to rearrange users' data. He gives examples of software that is too helpful, and concludes that software should support users in their management of displays without managing the displays for them.

Jeff Johnson
A Look at TestTrack Pro by Seapine Software[magazine]

Michele Rigney finds that Seapine's TestTrack Pro has added value to her company's products by providing a centralized system that captures the wants and needs of clients. Issues are tracked from initial report through resolution and release, and all the steps along the way are documented.

Michele D. Rigney
A Look at Mercury's TestDirector 7i[magazine]

Arne Henne looks at HP (Mercury Interactive) TestDirector and concludes that this test management tool improves the effectiveness of testing in almost any environment. It incorporates all aspects of the testing--requirements management, planning, scheduling, running tests, defect tracking--into a single browser-based application.

Arne Henne
Finding a Mentor[magazine]

Perhaps you've just changed careers and are looking for a leg up in your new chosen field. Perhaps you're an old pro wondering how to take your career to the next level. No matter how long you've been doing what you do, it's always good to have someone by your side to help move your career forward–a mentor. Elisabeth Hendrickson describes what qualities to look for in a mentor.

Elisabeth Hendrickson's picture Elisabeth Hendrickson
What Do They Pay You to Do?[magazine]

Don't assume that because you have a title or a job description that you can take either one as literal truth. Do you really know what your company pays you to do? Understanding why you were hired can help you assess whether your company's expectations are a match with the personal mission that motivates you.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman
Asking the Right Questions and Asking Them Right[magazine]

Naomi Karten shares how to ask the questions that ensure you and your customer are on the same page. Her tips include: 1) guard against conflicting interpretations; 2) don't jump to conclusions; 3) gather feedback early and often; 4) examine your rules for commenting; 5) conduct congruent questioning; and 6) find out what's important to your customers.

Naomi Karten's picture Naomi Karten
Facing Up to the Truth[magazine]

Technical Editor Esther Derby uses examples to show that our ability to "face the truth" and take effective action rests on the ability to be in a mental state where our emotions and fears aren't in control.

Esther Derby's picture Esther Derby
Testing Applications on the Web: Test Planning for Internet-Based Systems[magazine]

Danny Faught recommends Testing Applications on the Web: Test Planning for Internet-Based Systems by Hung Q. Nguyen. Faught concludes: "This book does not attempt to be a general reference on software testing. What it provides, instead, is domain-specific information that helps the reader plan for testing a Web-based application. Its clear illustrations of important Web testing approaches and its extensive checklists give testers detailed suggestions for their testing, based on real Web development experiences."

Danny R. Faught's picture Danny R. Faught
The Two Bugs[magazine]

Brian Marick applies the philosophical concept of "ready-to-hand" to software programming and describes two bugs that illustrate problems caused by mismatched reuse of ideas.

Brian Marick

Pages

CMCrossroads is a TechWell community.

Through conferences, training, consulting, and online resources, TechWell helps you develop and deliver great software every day.