2011: A CAST Odyssey

Last week I had the chance to be in Seattle for CAST2011 and I think it was definitely worth the effort to apply for a US visa, travel for 30 hours to get there, and another 30 to get back.

 

The conference was fully organized by volunteers, people that gave up their free time to make sure that the others enjoyed the conference.

 

Two days before the starting of the event everything was on time. Please read: “everything that the organizers had thought of”, as…

BBST Foundations a.k.a my testing bass line

I have just finished the BBST Foundation course from AST and it has been such a powerful motivational booster that I have to tell the whole world (read “testing community”) about it.
I have been a tester for almost ten years now and I’ve always considered myself one of the few that are still very much enthusiastic about testing. But this course has been like a wake-up call. It felt like an “intervention” coming from well-intentioned friends, meant to remind me that sometimes you’re so focused on what you’re doing that you forget how to do it well. It basically blew my mind.
Let me try to explain: …

‘No talk on Tuesday’ experiment

I think that when you work as a software tester, it’s important to have your mind trained to spot things and follow the logic of an application, so the capacity to focus is a key element. We are a team of software testers working in an open space office, but on different projects. One day, I realized  that we started to talk or chat if we had something in mind, without checking first if the others were busy or not. Whenever I wanted to know what the progress was with some tests, I just raised my voice and asked my colleagues how we stand. Whenever I remembered something interesting I started telling the story. They were questions, news, concerns or whatever had happened to me during the previous day:

“- Did you reply to the client’s latest email?”

Meeting James Bach

You heard about him, read about him, read his work… and you think you know what to expect. But nothing really prepares you for it. He’s intimidating and overconfident and at the same time passionate and charming. He’s everything you would like to be one day and he makes you believe you actually have a chance at it. All you have to do is think for yourself and question everything.
James Bach came to Romania for the first time for a workshop we organized in Cluj Napoca …

Selenium, XPath and Internet Explorer – Painfully Slow?

I’ve been using RobotFramework with its Selenium Library for web automation for quite a while now and have always had the problem of getting any scripts that use XPath run on Internet Explorer.

For some web applications, if they’re not too complex and don’t use a lot of Ajax, you might be able to run scripts that use XPath on Internet Explorer and actually have them finish in this lifetime. But most of the time, they won’t.
So I googled it. I found out that a lot of other people have googled it and a lot of them have complained on different forums. I’ve also found out that Selenium uses “AJAXSLT” as its default XPath library, which has a lot of performance issues on IE, and that the trick is to change this to the much faster javascript-xpath library.
However …

James Bach on Testing – 1 day workshop in Cluj-Napoca – Romania.

I am happy to announce that James Bach will be hosting a workshop on testing on October 25th in Cluj Napoca. Here you can find more information and register for this event.
We also encourrage anyone who isn’t from Cluj-Napoca/Romania to contact us if they want to take part in the workshop – I am confident we can help them find reasonable options for accommodation.
Alex

    Buying train tickets in Romania – a tester’s story.

    This year (or maybe at the end of last year) the Romanian national railroad company (CFR) introduced a new payment method: by bank card. I know we’re in 2010 and that this system has been in place for several years in many parts of the world, but in Romania it hadn’t been before. The thing I like most about this is that the option is only available in one ticket office from Bucharest Central Station – Gara de Nord – the one for international tickets, and nowhere else in Romania, as far as I know.
    For the first seven months of this year I traveled almost weekly with the train, an 95% of the time I paid the ticket with a bank card. During this time, I observed the following process for POS ticket payment: …

    Testing a sumoBot

    Robot-sumo, or pepe-sumo is a sport in which two robots attempt to push each other out of a circle/ring (in a similar fashion to the sport of sumo).
    The robots used in this competition are called sumoBots.

    The challengesfor the sumoBot are:

    • to find the opponent (accomplished with IR [infrared], Ultrasound, Presence sensors)
    • to push it out of the flat arena
    • to avoid leaving the arena (usually by means of a sensor that detects the edge, e.g BW [Black & White] sensors)

    Standardclass sumoBots: …

    Setting up your environment for Flash/Flex Automation

    Before going into details about some of the tools mentioned in the previous post, we thought it would be a good idea to start with what you need to do to get your environment ready for Flex/Flash automation. There’s a lot of information out there but there isn’t a place that walks you through the entire process – so we decided to write everything down and try to make it easier for other users.
    Here is what you need to get started: …

    Flex/Flash Test Automation Tools

    For a while now, I’ve been involved in testing a complex media web application developed in Flex, and I got to the point where some help from a tool would have been much appreciated :). I have to admit that this was my first RIA project, so I decided to dig a little bit into it, especially regarding the options one would have in automating some of the functional tests.

    Scope
    I don’t want to argue about the ROI of an automated GUI test suite, or about the fact that maybe it would be much more useful to automate some other types of testing like unit and performance (there are specific tools for each of these).

    All the info from this post can be found on the internet, but it takes a lot of time and trouble to gather and analyze it. This post will provide a list of tools I found that support Flex Automation, hoping it will help you if you’re thinking about functional testing automation for Flex based applications.

    The Flash in the blackbox
    The main issue with RIA Flex applications is …