Nicky Tests Software: May 2016

Monday, May 30, 2016

My 4 Main Takeaways from Let's Test 2016

Last year, I wrote a two-part reflection on my experience at Let's Test, which detailed every session I went to. This year, I've decided to take a different approach. While there's a lot I can say about every session I went to this year - I feel my time would be better spent on focussing on a few things that I took away from Let's Test 2016


1. Context > Process

In his workshop, Patrick Prill had us do a few activities where we discovered that instructions to do the same thing, can lead to wildly different results. One question that was asked was "How do you make good coffee?" - as someone answered the question, all I could think was Aren't you going to ask if they want milk or sugar? Part of me thought, there's no point having "good coffee" if you add condiments where they're not wanted.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Experience Report: Giving a talk at Let's Test as part of Speak Easy

Preparation

A few months ago, I approached Maria Kedemo to be my mentor as part of the Speak Easy Program. She said Yes! :D So we started working on my proposal and then later the actual talk itself together. At the start, we first discussed our expectations around how we would do this (to be honest, I remember having this discussion but not exactly what our expectations were, so I can't list them here). We collaborated on Google docs to work on the proposal and then later, the talk itself. We also had a few Skype calls (about an hour long on average) to prepare for Let's Test.

I practiced my talk with her for the first time (in full) about 1.5 - 2 weeks before Let's Test. At this point she gave really useful feedback and how to improve my talk which I took onboard including the use of specific examples from my past and tying the closing points to the opening story. I then practiced in front of Martin Hynie and Maria the night before I gave the actual talk.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

My 5 Biggest Takeaways from the BBST Bug Advocacy Course

I recently completed the BBST Bug Advocacy course and am currently waiting to hear whether I passed or failed. I was somewhat freaked out when I got sick (a damn cold) during the exam period and found myself having to reread the questions multiple times before I could figure out what I was supposed to do (thanks to my headache at the time). To add to that, none of the questions I practiced for were in the exam (I reviewed for about a third of them) so the first word that went through my mind when I went through the exam was S***.  I ended up splitting up my answers into multiple sections so that I could actually understand what I needed to do (this turned out to be something the reviewers really liked funnily enough). Enough of my wee rant, below are my biggest takeaways from the course.

1. Irreproducible bugs should still be raised

This was a big one for me. I've always thought "What's the point if I can't reproduce it?" The thing is, if a lot of people encounter the same bug over a period of time and can't reproduce it - then they (as a whole) can help gather evidence so that someone can fix it. If these bugs are never raised in the first place, then you can't gather evidence. It's worth noting though that you should state that you haven't been able to reproduce it.