The Doctor Is In: Diagnosing Test Automation Diseases

Seretta Gamba, Steria Mummert ISS GmbH

When doing test automation, you sometimes notice that things are not working out as expected, but it’s not clear why. You are so caught up in the day-to-day work that you don't see the bigger picture. It’s like when you get sick―you know something is wrong, but you don’t know what. That’s the time to visit a doctor. Doctors diagnose diseases mainly by asking questions. First, they get a general idea of what’s wrong; then the questions become more and more specific; and in the end, they identify the disease and prescribe the appropriate cure. This method also works well for test automation. By first asking general questions, and then more and more specific ones, you can identify the disease (the issue) and then it’s relatively simple to select the most appropriate remedy. Seretta Gamba demonstrates this method with examples of common automation diseases and suggests the appropriate patterns to cure them.

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