Call me Lazarus

Ok, reading my previous blog, a matter of being posted just over 3 years ago, I clearly didn’t also myself hard enough. I’ve just punched myself in the head. Hopefully that will stick.

Things have moved on since that post. I am now Test Engineering Manager at Marks and Spencer, a.k.a. Marks and Sparks, or M&S. I’ve been here for just over a year, tumultuous at times. I’ll describe it in another blog. In summary, it’s been a year of survival for Software Engineering at M&S, with some aspects moving in to revive and others already in thrive. The rollercoaster ride continues…


I really should post more often!

Completely forgot I started this. Just rediscovered it. I’ll give myself a slap later.

Quite possibly the best article on testing I’ve read

The article I am referring to in such glowing terms is called “Misconceptions about testing” by a guy called Huib Schoots, of whom I had not previous heard.

Huib wrote this in response to an article on the scrum alliance website Agile Methodology Is Not All About Exploratory Testing by Dele Oluwole. Not only has Huib made some very good points in response to that article, but in doing so he has bought together many other good articles and blog posts that form a useful and formidable reference resource. Some of the references I especially like are: Testing And Checking Refined by James Bach, which refines his colleague Michael Bolton’s blog post on Testing vs Checking (my previous “best article” before Huib’s one), the Little Black Book on Test Design by Rikard Edgren, plus the sections on using mind maps and the Agile Testing Quadrants.

Anyway, I urge you to read Huib’s article and bookmark for future reference. I can see myself frequently referring back to it.

Extract from “Misconceptions about testing” by Huib Schoots:

Misonceptions about testing

New job, new resolution…

…to write blog posts more frequently.

I have a catalyst to do this now as I started my new role as Lead QA & Test Automation Engineer at Huddle last Thursday, 7th July. Woohoo! Huddle are a cool company. I have a very good feeling, like we’re going places. Great colleagues, so friendly and helpful. Here’s to the future!

Automating Tests With SpecFlow

A few months ago I was asked to write an article for engineering team’s recently launched blog. I choose the subject of writing about automating tests with SpecFlow, as it was what I was doing at the time and found it to be a very good thing.

You can read the article here:

I hope you find it useful. Please rate the article and leave a comment if you have one. Feedback is appreciated. Thank you in advance.

SIGIST Autumn Conference in London

Today I attended the Autumn Conference of the Specialist Interest Group In Software Testing (SIGIST).

The first thing to say is that I was disappointed that none of the speakers talked like a pirate. It was after all, International Talk Like A Pirate Day (How do pirates get fit? Aaaaarrrr, gym lad!)

The second thing that struck me was that the talks were all good on their subject matter, but most were reiterating what has been said in the past at developer conferences. That is to say, the general testing community is still in waterfall mode. Not literally, in terms of advocating that as a testing methodology, but in the sense it is playing catch-up in the wake of the developer community. Talks about agile adoption are a good example of this, in that most were aimed at testers with little or no agile experience; they were mainly about transitioning and comparing to traditional testing.

Having said that, agile was mentioned a lot, possibly by every speaker and referenced in every slide deck. So we’re getting there, just playing a little catch-up.