Always do sober what you said you’d do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut. – Ernest Hemingway
I recently gave a talk at the EuroSTAR conference in Gothenburg, Sweden about how I feel you can re-frame the perception of your testing effort in your organisation. A big part of the philosophy underpinning my approach is to be honest, frank and up front about what is, and is not working with yourself first – then address anything that comes after that.
Part of my talk is about how bias and perceptions are formed, and I take several (hopefully humorous) pokes at the software testing industry to illustrate my point. I feel strongly, that we accept far too much nonsense and unverified claims about software testing, and in order for there to be fundamental change, those narratives that bounce around the echo chamber of testing conferences, vendors and blogs have to stop.
You may be aware that we have been actively supporting the Software Testing Education Program (STEP) in NYC with the non-profit Per Scholas. This program has been a huge success so far with 100% of the first 20 students already landed jobs at average wages of $40K a year. Per Scholas students enter the program with an average income of $7,000 annually, so you can see from these figures this work has serious and immediate impact. I’m happy to share that the success is continuing with its second cohort, which has already placed 3 students into full-time testing roles! Continue reading
“This is the true joy in life: Being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one, being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances, complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it what I can. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for the moment and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.” - George Bernard Shaw
I was recently awarded the Software Test Professionals 2013 STP Luminary Award, which aside from being flattering beyond belief, was a great honor to be included in such an incredible group of nominees. Every person nominated for the award has contributed a tremendous amount to the software testing industry, and I am grateful to be counted among their ranks. The award describes a luminary as “someone who has inspired others by their actions and the results of those actions on the profession”. I am fortunate to be one of those people who love my industry and have a great job where I get to work with talented colleagues who inspire me by their quiet “illumination” every day.
Had fun answering some questions for the EuroSTAR Conference Community Spotlight…enjoy!
“We absolutely must leave room for doubt or there is no progress and no learning. There is no learning without having to pose a question. And a question requires doubt. People search for certainty. But there is no certainty. People are terrified–how can you live and not know? It is not odd at all. You can think you know, as a matter of fact. And most of your actions are based on incomplete knowledge and you really don’t know what it is all about, or what the purpose of the world is, or know a great deal of other things. It is possible to live and not know.” - Richard Feynman
Recently I gave an interview to Duncan Nisbet from Lets’ Test which ranged in topics from my role at Barclays, the work we are doing with Per Scholas, and my talk on “Testing for Confidence” for EuroSTAR. Thomas Hulvershorn had a great comment and observation on Facebook about the idea of providing information without weighing in on release decisions;