Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Why to test?


I was yesterday keeping a talk on my company's team meeting on a topic What, Why, and How (to test) 2012. Most discussion was provoked on the Why section, where many gave their views on why do we test.

Here's some I think I remember..

- Produce and share information on the progress and quality of a system under test
- Mitigate risks related to the operational capabilities of clients IT
- Help the client to succeed
- To find important bugs
- Help client to do their business, and to be more successful with it
- Help end-users to get better products
- Client does not trust the vendor
- It is mandated by a process
- It is mandated by some authorities
- We are told to do so
- It's a job
 A good list of different and honest answers.

I just now added the following:
- Ask the questions no one else is asking
- Help other people to do better job
- Force some people to do a better job
- Build bridges of communication
- Provide a high-level view on the functionality of the system
- Provide different views on the functionality of the system
- Give a different (often critical) angle to a process/team/organization

(I'm sure that I've missed some obvious ones, but I'll this time post this before peeping to check the right answer from satisfice.com... )

But just listing and saying these things out is pretty easy. It gets harder to actually to find out what are the ones that are the important ones in the given moment. I've been talking a lot about the importance of knowing your purpose in testing situations, but am really often having a lot of trouble in finding the right one.

Just gonna keep asking those questions I guess.

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