Succeeding with Automated Integration Tests

The Shade Tree Developer

tl;dr This post is an attempt to codify my thoughts about how to succeed with end to end integration testing. A toned down version of this post is part of the Storyteller 3 documentation

About six months ago the development teams at my shop came together in kind of a town hall to talk about the current state of our automated integration testing approach. We have a pretty deep investment in test automation and I think we can claim some significant success, but we also have had some problems with test instability, brittleness, performance, and the time it takes to author new tests or debug existing tests that have failed.

Some of the problems have since been ameliorated by tightening up on our practices — but that still left quite a bit of technical friction and that’s where this post comes in. Since that meeting, I’ve been essentially rewriting our old Storyteller testing tool in…

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Negative Scenarios in BDD

Liz Keogh, lunivore

One problem I hear repeatedly from people is that they can’t find a good place to start talking about scenarios.

An easy trick is to find the person who fought to get the budget for the project (the primary stakeholder) and ask them why they wanted the project. Often they’ll tell you some story about a particular group of people that they want to support, or some new context that’s coming along that the software needs to work in. All you need to do to get your first scenario in that situation is ask, “Can you give me an example?”

When the project or capability is about non-functionals such as security or performance, though, this can be a bit trickier. =

I can remember when we were talking to the Guardian editors about performance on the R2 project. “When (other national newspaper) went live with their new front page,” one…

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Cultural Fit

Think Different

Cultural Fit

I note a recent spate of articles advising employers to “recruit for cultural fit”. And the inevitable backlash against that advice. Like most advice, this simple soundbite conceals a whole can of worms.

Where Are We At?

If we’re happy with our current “culture”, then by all means hire for “cultural fit”. We will likely hire new people that look the same, act the same and think the same as those folks already in the organisation. And thereby reinforce our existing culture and status quo. Which, if we’re happy with it, is what we want, right?

But if we ponder for a moment and conclude that our current “culture” is more of a hindrance than a help, we might want to look to a future in which the culture is different from how it is now. Maybe, markedly different.

“Until I came to IBM, I probably would have told you that culture…

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My visit to Let’s Test 2015 – Day 3

Test Pappy

Waking up a bit early to pack my stuff and check out before breakfast. I am a bit tired, but I guess I also got used to it.

Fun moment of the morning was to receive the newsletter from Testing Circus about the May issue, featuring the guy I spend the three past evenings with playing board and card games. Erik Davis! Great job, Erik!

I had breakfast and a chat with Emma and Dan Ashby. So far I only had the chance to shake hands with Dan.

Jean-Paul Varwijk “ISO 29119”

The last day went by way too fast. I decided to visit Jean-Pauls session on ISO29119, which was a good choice. It was not only good talk, but also a great discussion afterwards. I already knew a big bite before that talk, but I got also a good portion of new information lighting the spirit to fight…

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My visit to Let’s Test 2015 – Day 2

Test Pappy

My second morning under the Swedish sun went better and my alarm woke me up. At the breakfast table I was joined by some new and tired faces and had good chats with them. Again I got some info about sessions I missed the day before.

After breakfast I had a short but inspiring chat with Michael Bolton.

Guy Mason’s “Utilizing Automation Tools in a CDT environment”

The morning session I chose was “Utilizing Automation Tools in a CDT environment” with Guy Mason. A very interesting session, because it described the idea that Richard Bradshaw propagates about “automation in testing”, but coming from a bit different angle. Since this is a topic that I currently try to establish at work, I was all the more interested in this discussion, if all arguments and approaches I found so far, were confirmed and needed a new look on them. Guy’s message was to use automation…

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My visit to Let’s Test 2015 – Day 1

Test Pappy

Welcome to the second part of my visit to Let’s Test 2015. You can find the arrival day here.

The bright Swedish sun woke me up around 0530 for the first time, and I panicked, because I thought I missed the alarm going off. AfterI checked the time I realized that I need to get used to Swedish “nights” quickly. With a sunrise before 5 am the early mornings are really bright and the curtains are not that useful at all.

At breakfast I finally met Dan Billing and had time for a chat with him. This guy has a lot of knowledge around security testing and more. And he is also one of the facilitators of Weekend Testing Europe. I also met Chris for the first time. Not my last encounter with this really nice Swiss fellow.
A fun moment at the table was meeting Nicola and…

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