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F.A.I.L.U.R.E.
 

F.A.I.L.U.R.E.

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A mnemonic for testing error messages.

A mnemonic for testing error messages.

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F.A.I.L.U.R.E. F.A.I.L.U.R.E. Presentation Transcript

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  • Now that I have your attention, prepare to read fast v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • You’re testing… And an error message appears v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Did you expect it? Or are you surprised? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • How does it make you feel? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • What do you do? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com Not ready reading drive A Abort, Retry, Ignore, Fail?
  • Continue to the next test step… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Report a bug… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Resolve unknown conflict… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Find a file… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Eliminate something… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Request permission… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Try again… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Try something new… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Seek help… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Set a reference to an instance… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • lick OK… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com C
  • lick OK… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Save… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Enter a multiple of |ECL0… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Exit… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Reconnect… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Declare success… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Assign blame… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Laugh… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Restart… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Guess… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Gasp… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Request a raise… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Swear… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • So… v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • What do you do when you encounter an error? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • While you think about that, let me tell you what I do. v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Oh, who am I? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I am Ben Simo [email_address] v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I use software [email_address] v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I test software [email_address] v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I question software [email_address] www.QuestioningSoftware.com v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I code software [email_address] www.QuestioningSoftware.com v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I code software that helps test software [email_address] www.QuestioningSoftware.com v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I talk about software [email_address] www.QuestioningSoftware.com v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I write about software [email_address] www.QuestioningSoftware.com v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I think about software [email_address] www.QuestioningSoftware.com v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I like software v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I like software that serves people v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I like software that helps people v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I dislike bad software v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I dislike bad software that frustrates people v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I dislike bad software that confuses people v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I dislike bad software that angers people v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I dislike bad software that discombobulates people v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I sometimes like big words that discombobulate people v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • But only for a moment v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Discombobulate means to emotionally confuse v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Discombobulate means to frustrate v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Discombobulate means to bewilder v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Discombobulate means to confound v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Discombobulate means to befuddle v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Discombobulate means to perplex v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Too many error messages discombobulate people v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Error messages should help people, not confuse them v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • You see, It’s not about the software v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • It’s about the people! v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Testers often fail to test the error messages v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • They fail to think about how they affect people v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • So what do I do when I encounter error messages? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I test them v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I test them using the FAILURE mnemonic v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • A mnemonic is a device that aids memory recall v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The FAILURE mnemonic is an acronym that helps me recall guideword heuristics v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Guideword heuristics are words that guide thinking through a problem v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The FAILURE mnemonic’s guideword heuristics help me think about testing error messages v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The F reminds me to think about Functional aspects of the error F AILURE v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Functional questions like Does the error detection function as expected? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Functional questions like Does the error handling function as expected? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Functional questions like Does the error reporting function as expected? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Functional questions like Does the error dialog, window, or page function as expected? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Functional questions like Does the software recover from the error? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Functional questions like Was there really an error? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Functional questions like Are other errors like this reported? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Functional questions like Do dialog buttons work? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Functional questions like Is error message information accurate? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Functional questions like Is it functional? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Only I don’t stop at Functional v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • A Functional error message is not necessarily an Appropriate error message v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The A reminds me to ask if the error reporting is Appropriate F A ILURE v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Appropriate questions like Is the error reporting timely? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Appropriate questions like Is the error reporting accurate? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Appropriate questions like Are UI messages free of inappropriate technical detail? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Appropriate questions like Is there a better way to handle or report the error? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Appropriate questions like Is the error user friendly? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Appropriate questions like Are errors detected as early in the user workflow as possible? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Appropriate questions like Are system resource problems detected while there is still time to remedy the problem? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Appropriate questions like Is the situation communicated appropriately for the intended audience? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Appropriate questions like Is a user allowed to waste time and effort only to be told that their work cannot be applied? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The I reminds me to ask about the Impact of the error FA I LURE v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Impact questions like
    • Is the impact communicated?
    v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Impact questions like
    • Is the impact communicated
    • to the user?
    v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Impact questions like
    • Is the impact communicated
    • to others?
    v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Impact questions like Will the user understand the impact? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Impact questions like
    • Is any impact to the user’s data communicated?
    v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Impact questions like Does the message contain too much information? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Impact questions like
    • Was a transaction only partially completed?
    v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The L reminds me to ask about the error Log FAI L URE v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like Should the error be logged for support? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like Should the error be logged for system administrators? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like Should the error be logged for developers? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like Should the error be logged for technical investigation? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like Will log information be available if the user waits to report a problem? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like Are log messages standardized to support automated information mining? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like Can I grep this error? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like Do logs contain enough information? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like Do logs contain useless information? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like
    • Is this an error that should not be logged?
    v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like
    • Is there too much logging?
    v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like
    • Does excessive logging impact performance?
    v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like
    • Does excessive logging impact disk space?
    v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Log questions like
    • Does the logging help or complicate error investigation?
    v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The U reminds me to think about the User Interface FAIL U RE v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like Is the error reported to the user? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like Does this error need to be reported to the user? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like What user activity caused the failure? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like What user activity caused the failure? Is this communicated to the user? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like Who is the user? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like Are UI messages worded for the intended audience? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like Is this message consistent with the desired look and feel? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like Is the UI reporting consistent with reporting for other errors? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like Is the UI reporting efficient? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like Does the user need to click away excessive dialogs? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like Is this the best way to communicate the error? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask UI questions like Could this error be handled without involving the user? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The R helps me think about error Recovery FAILU R E v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Recovery questions like Is the user told how to recover from the impact of the error? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Recovery questions like Does the user need to contact support? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Recovery questions like Is support contact information provided? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Recovery questions like Does support know how to fix the problem? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Recovery questions like Does the software guide the user through the recovery process? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Recovery questions like Or is the user left to figure it out on their own? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The E leads me to think about the Emotions of users FAILUR E v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Emotions questions like What emotions are likely to be raised by the error message? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Emotions questions like Does the error reporting evoke the desired user emotions? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Emotions questions like Does this message enhance user frustration? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Emotions questions like Does this message quiet user frustration? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Emotions questions like Does this message encourage users to use some other product? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • I ask Emotions questions like Does this message cause confusion? v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Asking these types of questions can help turn FAILURE into success v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The next time you encounter an error message v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The next time you encounter an error message Test it! v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • The next time you encounter an error message Question it! v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • Try the FAILURE mnemonic
    • F unctional
    • A ppropriate
    • I mpact
    • L og
    • U I
    • R ecovery
    • E motions
    v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com
  • And let me know how it works for you v1.2 FAILURE.QualityFrog.com F unctional A ppropriate I mpact L og U I R ecovery E motions
  • Ben Simo [email_address] v1.2 Copyright © 2007 Quality Frog http://FAILURE.QualityFrog.com F unctional A ppropriate I mpact L og U I R ecovery E motions