i have been tied up with sorting out months of papers this evening and took so long and almost missed this meeting tonight. I was just about close my computer and go to sleep and realized it was saturday night and I had told Marlena [blog] [twitter @MarlenaC] that i was going to join the WTANZ this time.
Logged into Skype and noticed Marlena’s message. I was already 20 minutes late into the session. after exchanging few messages with the group, i got the objective http://groups.google.co.nz/group/software-testers-new-zealand/browse_thread/thread/6cbee3a6fb040310
looking over that and the objective was to : (from Oliver’s link above)
1) Have a look at the mortgage calculator and roughly script/try some
tests to verify functional correctness. Try and be creative about
breaking the solution. (rough time estimate 40min)
2) Have a look and think at usability and if this calculator matches
your expectations or not. (rough time estimate 10min)
3) Have a look at browser compatibility and make a quick assessment.
(rough time estimate 10min)
Please do not…
* …automate your testing
* …performance test
* …security test
* …test the Login functionality. Just the mortgage calculator.
Aim of this exercise is to show & share different methodologies on how
to test something. There is no right or wrong here. Do what you
usually do and share your process in the discussion bit at the end.
Don’t be shy to share. Ask for help if you don’t understand something
or want more details!
well, this time for joining late and having only few minutes left, i jumped straight into exploring than planning my approach and asking any questions although i found some ambiguities there. here is the screenshot of the calculator screen
Marlena and others mentioned about logging the defects and observation on http://www.bugrepository.com – a defect repository where we can log the issues for tracking. Being a first time user for these tools, it took a little lag in coping up between the task, IM chat, bug repository logging defects, etc.
Alright, enough of my excuses and story but what did I learn from the discussion for the time I engaged with:
> learned about following tools to leverage:
http://validator.w3.org for HTML checker
http://www.browsershots.org –> a fantastic tool that provides several browser types and runs the given URL in all those selected browsers and provides the screenshot – absolutely Fantastic tool to see how the screen looks on various browsers. There were browser names I had never heard of.
> various different ideas the group shared in how they approached and things they did to get through the objective.
> great communication – kind of questions participants asked during the session; help sought and offered; tools shared, ideas shared, etc…
>Questioning skills – @oliver asked great questions and so also others. It is critical to ask the right questions in solving any mission, which I am still working on, it was great to observe the pattern and learn from the group
Oliver Erlewein [site] moderated the session through out. I liked the way he asked the questions every time a participant reported an observation. some of those were like
“do you think that’s a defect?”
“how would you report that bug”
“why do you think that’s a defect?”
“If you had a luxury of time how would you have approached?” and so on…
How about Planning for problem solving? Looks like some of us being new to skype spent some time figuring out using the chat sessions. however, @Oliver asked if anyone went through the planning process for problem solving. I am not sure if I’ve missed, but noticed most saying jumped straight into the task. I did so too. I would probably have taken another approach if we all had joined the problem solving at the same time. personally, I have no excuse, could still have done some outlining even in the time I had. I missed. Here is what I would have done perhaps:
a. understand the objective to more extent
b. Ask questions for ambiguities – in this case i noticed multiple mortgage calculators, i wasn’t sure which one the group was looking at.
c. plan on the approach for different types of testing – including boundary, security (well, security was out of scope from mission), and edge scenarios
d. Scenarios – understand how mortgage concept works and come up with the approach / scenarios around the user context – customers first – Customers use the product in ways we don’t imagine – explore being in customers’ shoes.
e. plan on the tools and resources required to complete the mission (see above for some tools shared by team)
f. ESTIMATE what it takes for the planned approach – so that helps building the estimation skills which we often need to develop for the task completion; and can be tracked during the task progress and after completion
g. attack the mission – well, there could still be situations where we might have to keep the plan aside and do what’s needful – that’s where the Risk Identification and Mitigation would have helped;
It was great to know James Bach [website] [blog] was on the WTANZ too. It was great to join in my 2nd of the series WT in past few weeks, and the 1st WTANZ (Australia and NZ). I hope i will be able to join in these in upcoming weeks too. Problem solving is great at these sessions but the retrospection or debriefing discussion after the exercise that I liked the best that we interact so much and learn their approach and what would have gone right and the improvements could be made in future for similar instances. Thats invaluable.. talk about the participation? I think there were people from across the globe participating in this session.
It was great to catch up with Marlena since she moved from the states few weeks ago. Thank you @Marlena for mentioning about this session and timing (zone) seems to worked out for me this time :)
if you are interested to participate in Weekend Test – see http://www.weekendtesting.com
<ps: i will update the links and any further findings a little later as appropriate>
<Apr 18 update: updated few links and questioning sections>