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Exploratory Testing Explained and Experienced

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A 45 minute presentation delivered in Turku Agile Days for a mixed audience of mostly non-testers.

A 45 minute presentation delivered in Turku Agile Days for a mixed audience of mostly non-testers.

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  • Lisähuomiona: perinteiset testausvaiheet väärin nimetty, ovat korjausvaiheita. Hyväksymistestaus on ainoa testausvaihe – ja vain mikäli järjestelmätestaus on tuotannonkaltaista. Boltoninsertifiointi: "I test. You observe. We talk. You decide".
  • The slogan ”Better tests, better testers!” comes from a presentation by Cem Kaner. Itkonen, J., M.V. Mäntylä, C. Lassenius: Defect Detection Efficiency: Test Case Based vs. Exploratory Testing, in proceedings of ESEM, pp. 61-70, 2007Starts with an idea: a chest of goldEnds with a perception: nothing to find; earth ends here. Know your mission!Tunnustetaan ohjelmistokehityksen ja –testauksen luonne tietotyönä ja hyödynnetään ihmisiä tekemisen selkärankanaItseohjautuvat tiimitIhmisen kyky oppiaIhmiset voi laittaa jatkamaan toisen jäljiltä muutenkin kuin rakentamalla ensin dokumentaation jolla tieto ei kuitenkaan välity!Kotimaista tutkimusta Itkonen et al. Samat tulokset pienemmillä kustannuksillaKaksi isoa haastetta: testauksesta ei saada tuloksia (ei osata ajatella monipuolisesti) ja testausta ei osata lopettaa ajoissa.
  • The difference between people who do ad hoc testing (a starting form of exploratory testing) is significant. It is especially visible for a manager in a scrum meeting. When you, as a tester, answer the question: ”what did you do since yesterday and what do you plan on doing by tomorrow”, you’re not doing a very good job in ET if you tell that ”Found a problem in X, will find another one” – you’re not enabling your team to learn about testing, most likely since you did not learn yourself yet. Learning is a key element in exploratory testing!
  • Esimerkki FSC:ltä – areas, subareas, kuva riskiperusteisen testauksen kurssilta jne.
  • Kaikkea saa ja voi muuttaa, mutta ei hallitsemattomasti vaan tiedostaen koko ajan!Isompi konteksti: budjetointi jne. Tehtävänantolista vs. testiloki. Muutoksen hanskaaminen testauksen aikana.

Transcript

  • 1. ExploratoryTesting –Explained and Experienced
    Maaret Pyhäjärvi
    Email: <maaret@iki.fi> | Gsm: 040-8233777
    "The purpose of testing is largely to force everyone to see the detailed implications of their vague daydreams." -- James Bach
    Turku Agile Day 2011
    (2011-03-17)
    Erkki Pöyhönen & Maaret Pyhäjärvi
    Attribution (Tekijä mainittava) http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/
  • 2. About the Speaker: Experiences in testing and being a tester on varied basis
    Started with testing -95: localization testing for greek version of an English software system
    Subcontractor-side on various projects: moving from localizations to functional testing
    Tried being in a developer role after thinking testers are not respected: the problem is not per role
    Teaching testing at HUT, giving public presentations and courses on testing
    Researcher in testing, consulting various organizations, teaching, being a test manager and a tester, with and without test automation
    At F-Secure with product business 2005 – 2008
    Moved to insurance pension sector, first with subcontractor side, now on customer side (Ilmarinen) as test manager / test specialist.
    Doing testing-related training on the side of a normal day-to-day job to get to meet brilliant testers in Finland.
    TESTER AND A WALKING TESTING DICTIONARY
    AGILE PROJECTS @ F-SECURE
    PLAN-DRIVEN PROJECTS @ ILMARINEN
  • 3. RealizationsaboutNature of Testing
    20
    14
    1639
    5±2
    3
  • 4. ”Testing mathematics” Extra Short Curriculum
    20
    14
    1639
    5±2
    A kids game ”20 questions teaching something relevant about testing. With two optional strategies to the game: 1) listing questions beforehand at a time you know the least or 2) asking questions one by one learning from the answer to the question already asked.
    Why in testing we continuously play with the foolish strategy?
    Common advice in testing is to think the expected results beforehand – in avoidance of blindness. Testing targets the unknown problems.
    Why do we invest a significant portion of limited project budgets actually to minimize the probability of finding the unexpectedproblems?
    • http://viscog.beckman.illinois.edu/flashmovie/15.php
    • 5. http://www.dothetest.co.uk/whodunnit.html
    The samemaynotbe the sameifyouchangeanyvariable. Testing is notaboutcoveringall of itagainst a specification, butthinkingabout ”is there a problem, is itrelevant”.
    Human memory is limited – ”human envelope”. We need documentation as support, especially when working under pressure. Documentation is huge expense, which only passes small portion of information. Why not create the documentation at the time we understand the needs best – towards the end of project.
  • 6. Exploratory Testing:Better tests, better testers!
    An approach to software testing
    Emphasized freedom and responsibility of an individual in a process where continuous optimization of value of information is important
    “Any testing process that involves simultaneous learning, test design, and execution.” – James Bach & Cem Kaner
    Disciplined, planned and controlled testing that emphasizes continuous learning
    Research in Finland, Itkonen et al. 2007
    No significant difference in results for preplanned test cases and exploratory testing
    More false alarms with test cases
    Comparing overall effort: significantly more in test-case based testing
    Unknown territory
    Test-related learning
    Design of new tests
    Test execution
    Result interpretation
    5
  • 7. There’s a Difference!
    A comment I hear often on the ET course I give:
    ”I’ve always been doing this just did not give it a name”
    I must emphasize that:
    I require more out of exploratory testing than just ”going where you feel like while testing”
    Ask yourself:
    Can you defend your choices of strategy and tactics?
    Can you explain what you’ve done in words that don’t just explain numbers of bugs found?
    How do you know if you’re done or not?
    6
    ”My testing would be unsystematic ad hoc testing if I could not tell the story of my tests, remember what I’ve tested or what my strategy was, or relate that back to my mission” –James Bach
  • 8. The Scale of Tester’s Freedom
    Role-based sandboxes
    Vague scripts
    Fragment test cases (scenarios)
    Pure scripted
    Freestyle
    Charters
    ”To what extent am I in control of the test and from where did the idea originate?”
    7
  • 9. Two Sides of Exploratory Testing
    For the tester
    For the manager
    Value
    Fun
    Freedom
    Controllability
    Flexibility
    Reliability
    Professionalism
    Visibility
    Respect
    8
  • 10. Framework of Management
    Vision (“Sandbox”)
    Current Charter
    Other Charters
    Details
    Coaching
    Quality Report
    Perception of quality and coverage
    Debriefing
    Charter backlog of the future testing
    ”A day’s work”
    Past
    Results
    Obstacles
    Outlook
    Feelings
    Next in importance!
    Test Manager
    Metrics summary
    #
    ?
    x
    Out of budget
    #, ?, x, +
    20:20:60
    Session sheets of the past testing
    Bug Reports
    Idea of exploration
    Tester
    9
  • 11. The Pieces in Management Framework
    A disciplined tester replanning on various levels
    Session with charter that provides a report
    Classification of information created as metrics
    Prioritizing of what test idea comes next
    Supporting reporting by debriefing
    Supporting skills development by coaching
    Creating a combined judgement of quality by quality reporting
    10
  • 12. Testautomation / tools in ET
    Anyform of acquiringquality-relatedinformationfits into exploratorytesting
    It’snotmanual, it’sbrain-engaged – and for makingthathappen, youneed to besmart with automation and tools!
    Example: youmightnot at firstknowwhatyou’relooking for...
    Search "<ns1:Koodi>" (443 hits in 169 files) in VE
      Y:ELLULAPATestausKokonaiseläketurvan-oteAnsaintatiedot-VEHaeAnsaintatiedot-VE__ 20110307 14-22-15.xml (4 hits)
                    Line 1313:                <ns1:Koodi>YL130I</ns1:Koodi>
                    Line 1317:                <ns1:Koodi>LAPA_172_011</ns1:Koodi>
                    Line 1321:                <ns1:Koodi>67</ns1:Koodi>
                    Line 1324:                <ns1:Koodi>67</ns1:Koodi>
     A lot of textcutawayfromhere…
  • 13. Potentially Useful Tools for Exploratory Testing
    SnapzPro
    http://www.ambrosiasw.com/utilities/snapzprox/
    HyperSnap
    http://www.hyperionics.com/hsdx/
    TestExplorer
    http://www.sirius-sqa.com/
    BBTestAssistant
    http://www.bbsoftware.co.uk/
    Spector
    http://www.spector.com/spectresoft.html
    Cygwin
    http://www.cygwin.com/
    UnixUtils
    http://unxutils.sourceforge.net/
    Regular Expressions
    http://www.ilovejackdaniels.com/cheat-sheets/regular-expressions-cheat-sheet/
    Process Monitor
    http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysinternals/processesandthreads/processmonitor.mspx
    Process Explorer
    http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysinternals/processesandthreads/processexplorer.mspx
    Holodeck
    http://www.securityinnovation.com/holodeck/index.shtml
    perlclip
    http://www.satisfice.com/tools.shtml
    DataGraph
    http://www.visualdatatools.com/DataPlot/index.html
    Vermont High Test
    http://www.vtsoft.com/
    Firebug
    http://www.getfirebug.com/
    iMacros
    http://www.iopus.com/imacros/firefox/
    JMeter
    http://jakarta.apache.org/jmeter/
    VirtualPC
    http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/winfamily/virtualpc/default.mspx
    VMWare
    http://www.vmware.com/
    Parallels
    http://www.parallels.com/
  • 14. TestIdeas / Quick-and-Dirty
    Download the full 2-page CheatSheet with ideasfromElisabeth Hendrickson, James Lyndsay, and Dale Emery on Qualitytree.com
  • 15. (Exploratory) Testing Dynamics Source: Adapted from James Bach, Jon Bach, Michael Bolton. Exploratory Testing Dynamics. v.2.2. 2009
    ”…skills that comprise professional and cost effective exploration of technology. Each is distinctly observable and learnable, and each is necessary to exploratory work.”
    ”Exploratory testing spirals upward toward a complete and professional set of test artifacts”
    ”A set of
    considerations designed to help you test robustly or evaluate someone else’s testing.”
    ” To develop ideas or search a complex space quickly yet thoroughly, not only must you look at the
    world from many points of view and perform many kinds of activities”
  • 16. Exploration SkillsSource: Adapted from James Bach, Jon Bach, Michael Bolton. Exploratory Testing Dynamics. v.2.2. 2009
    Done
    To Do
    Issues
    Coverage
    All sources available
    Best use of time – effective and efficient work
    Making models
    Tool support – creative solutions
    Risk-based testing – scientific approach
    Keeping one’s eyes open
  • 17. To EndThis With: ExploratoryTestingStrenghts and BlindSpots
    Strengths
    Value-focused: stakeholders, risks, good-enoughquality and knowledge of quality
    Leverageseachtester’sstrengths
    Makestestersbettercontinuously
    Enablesadapting to changes and surprises
    Revealsinformationthatwasnotavailablewithoutlearningwhileusing the system
    Avoidnon-valuableduplicativework in testingthroughfocus on results
    Highbugfindingrates
    BlindSpots
    Requirescalendartime for learning with the software: the lessweknow, the morewe’relikely to miss
    Limited byeachtester’sweaknessesifnotmitigatedbyoverlappingassignmentsbased on individual’scompetencies
    Skilled and disciplinedwork – canbelearned with mentoring, nottransferredthroughdocumentation
  • 18. WHY do testers look both ways when crossing a one-way street?
    It may be one-way on this corner, two ways on that corner.
    You may only *think* it's a one-way street.
    Someone might be backing up
    Ears don't warn you when a bicycle is coming the wrong way.
    They realize people can be fooled by preconceptions.
    When helping someone, you've extra duty to seek improbables.
    Source: Various tweets by testers in 2010.