RTC 2017 – NOT talking about testing…

There’s not much more I can say about the quality of the Romanian Testing Conference, than to just point you in the direction of the speakers page. I have to hand to chair Rob Lambert and the team at RTC, they put on one hell of a conference. The venue was fantastic, the proceedings seamless, and as for attendees you couldn’t ask for much more. Having never been to Cluj, I didn’t know what to expect, but whatever those expectations might have been, they were far exceeded. The folks at the conference were engaged, critical, and after decent amount of antagonizing them in my workshop, even started to push back under my questioning!

As usual, meeting so many enthusiastic testers is always a highlight of a conference, and catching up with old friends is a bonus. Seeing my pals Santhosh, Rob, Elizabeth, Huib, Gina, and John was just what the doctor ordered for some no-nonsense chats about testing, community, and life, undistracted from the usual noise of the software testing industry. That feeling of being unencumbered by all the typical corporate conference overhead was the impression I left with, and that’s something special that “the Andréi’s” have cooked up. Well done, guys!

That being said, amongst all the highlights, a couple of things really stood out for me. The first one was finally getting a chance to meet and hear Viktor Slavchev speak and as well, have a couple of 121 chats. I caught the tail end of his talk about test automation and saw him handle the Q&A like a pro, which is very impressive at it was his first international conference and his first in English! Viktor cares deeply about our business and his approach is rooted in a pragmatism and common sense that is rare in our far too often “tool first” industry.

The other highlight of the conference for me was probably a bit self-indulgent, as it wasn’t on any official program or agenda. I was fortunate enough to be there after the conference and spend the day wandering around Cluj with some folks I had never really gotten to know before. I joined Nicola Owen, Beren van Daele, and Maik Nogens for an epic walk across the city, lunch, and dinner discussing everything from testing, TV shows, income inequality, and too many other topics to list. What a pleasure it was to hang out with such intelligent, friendly and open folks.

I would be remiss if I didn’t take an extra word to thank, as my wife refers to him as “that nice young man with the testing cards”, Beren for the walk back to the hotel we took alone. We had a deep discussion about the testing community, CDT, and principles, and I’m still thinking about our chat. More to come on that, I’m sure!

All said, I had a fantastic time talking about testing by NOT talking about testing and would welcome any opportunity to return. If you get the chance to attend RTC, I would highly recommend it…cheers! – KK