Monday, June 02, 2008

Goal of Testing and a quotable quote

Michael Bolton in response to this post from Steve Rowe mentioned this gem …

“Do our automated tests take into account the notion that different people might value different things, and that one of the tester's primary goals is to recognize different constituencies and the ways in which their values might be threatened? “

Many people in our community think that as testers our goal is:
  1. To find bugs
  2. To prove that the application "works" as per the specifications.
  3. Run a bunch of tests and report the results,
  4. Develop some automation to speed up the execution of tests
But to “analyze”, “investigate” the value systems/perceptions of different stakeholders of a software product and explore various possibilities where stakeholder’s value is threatened. This involves among other things – finding some bugs, running some tests, writing some automation etc. Note that End user or customer of the software is an important stakeholder.

This is statement from Michael is an extension or probably logical conclusion of the famous statement that is often associated with testing “Be customer’s advocate” (or “think like customer”). Michael seems to suggest that it is not only customer whom we should consider, as testers we think about all stakeholders and explore what each of these stake holders value.

A stakeholder is a person is who is affected by the success or failure of a project or the Actions and inactions of a product or the effects of service – Cem Kaner

In one of the comments for the same post, I found another worth quoting statement from Ben Walther

“There will always be inputs into your system that violate the assumptions made in building it. A computer generated test will not be able to violate such assumptions.”

Very true … that is why testing is so challenging and exciting


1 comment:

Ben said...

Hey Shinri, thanks for the mention!

You're everywhere when it comes to testing; how do you find the time?