Hello to you all!

Sorry it's been so long since my last post. Things have been fairly hectic in my life over the last 6 months and I haven't been able to dedicate much time to my professional development as a tester.

Since becoming certified as an Intermediate level tester I have gone on to study towards the "Advanced Test Manager" certification...I know, don't hate me, I'm really doing it so that I have a better chance of being hired as a tester in the near future. However, just as my previous post outlined, I have ABSOLUTELY NO EXPERIENCE IN SOFTWARE TESTING, only "Theory" and Insurance Testing.

It does make me a bit sad that I have to be so two faced just to catch a break, but this is how the job market is in this day and age. Having a superfluous certification seems to count more than actual experience in the field in a LOT of places...


Anyway, I've since broadened my horizons and am looking to get more involved with the community over the next few months, not only to boost my professional machismo, but to gain new skills through actually applying all the theory I've been given didactically through the professional body.

To do this, I have started trying to get to grips with the Selenium Plug In for Firefox.


And now for my question to you all, other than Alan Richardson’s publication “Selenium Simplified” (which is on the Christmas list!), does anyone know of any actual sites which make for good practice? Or where there would be any informative tutorials/information available to aid my learning?


Thank you all for your support, both past and present, and I look forward to updating you all again in the new year J


Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and Happy Hanukkah to all.


Love and hugs,



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Comment by Martin Lewis on January 1, 2012 at 5:19


Just to add, I do take your points on board David and apologise.  I didn't deliberately intend to run a bypass of your question and responses, I stumbled on the link whilst reading blogs and genuinely thought the set of questions was interesting and worth adding to the discussion.

Happy new year :-)



Comment by Martin Lewis on January 1, 2012 at 4:54

Hi David,

No worries, - I thought that could be an interesting link as there are some interesting questions in that questionnaire for further thinking.



Comment by David Ramsay on December 31, 2011 at 20:44

Hi Martin, Conor,

Firstly I would recommend that the link you have provided for Conor is ignored as the response to the questions posed (in the link) are NOT the ideal, I should know as Dot Graham presented the test to me in the late 1980's and I believe that originated from herself.

Secondly Martin, I am trying to help an individual who is starting out in testing and I am trying to coach them through the thought process.  I could provide the correct answers myself but there is NO learning in that is there?

Thirdly, a guid New Year to both of you.

Comment by Martin Lewis on December 31, 2011 at 16:55

Hi Conor,

Merry Christmas, happy new year. 

I think this link could be of use: http://blog.shino.de/2010/07/19/answers-to-an-interview-questionnaire/

All the best for 2012.



Comment by Conor Moore on December 29, 2011 at 13:00

Hi Dave,

In short, a.

Comment by David Ramsay on December 29, 2011 at 12:52
Hi Conor,

I wouldn't necessarily say blabbering, anyway you seem to be avoiding answering q1, it's relatively straight forward a or b or ...

Comment by Conor Moore on December 29, 2011 at 12:44

Hi David,

What I meant in my response to Question 1 was, if I were handed a new piece of software and was merely told to test it, chances are that I would automatically look through the software to find fault with it as I wouldn't have been given any information regarding it or what the user's experience should be.

However, if I was handed the software along with a technical specification and a user requirements doc, then I would firstly go through the software and ensure that the user requirements have all been met, and then go through the software with the technical specification to ensure that 1. The documentation is complete  2. It's functioning as it should. Then I would go through and test what's left, such as unacceptable/unexpected inputs, static testing of the code and regression testing etc...

With regards to the development of the automated regression, I would have thought that there would be initial unit tests developed and recorded for the software whilst in production, and then confirmation tests developed and recorded to test on a larger and more thorough scale. All these tests would surely be added to, over the lifetime of the software, as a comprehensive regression package for that software and therefore not developed by a single person (unless they're the only tester, in which case my argument is somewhat mooted), rather a team of testers over time.

Also, with regards to repetition, please forgive me for being somewhat ambiguous with my statement. What I was trying to say was that, whilst the tools, skills and processes may be the same, the analysis of the software itself would make it seem as though you're not repeating the same actions daily, such as some of my admin work from my days of yore.

On the subject of Bias, I was referring to the tester themselves coming to a foregone conclusion in which mindset to apply before they have all the facts regarding the kind of testing which would be required of them.

I fully understand the need for compromise and the place of bias in the workplace as I deal with them both on a daily basis. Time, in my opinion, shouldn’t be a factor in the equation as you should be prepared to knuckle down until the work’s done. Resource on the other hand is a finite number and I know for a fact that not everyone shares my views with regards to time which would make any human resource fairly scarce come 5PM.

That said, a lot of the issues I encounter come from a management team that don’t understand testing, what it’s for and what it achieves. They don’t expect a lot of thought to go into it and they expect that it can be done in an afternoon to confirm that something’s working. I’ve taken it as my responsibility for educating my management on such issues and have even forced back deadlines as they had only dedicated an afternoon to a product for testing when it should have had somewhere near 4 days (roughly 93 man hours) dedicated to it to ensure that the product would be issued without issue and with the utmost confidence. 

Right, I feel I’m blabbering on now. I hope I’ve made my opinions somewhat clearer than they were previously.

Thank you very much for your responses thus far, they’ve been quite enjoyable :)


Comment by David Ramsay on December 29, 2011 at 9:11
Hi Conor,

Question 1 IMHO, requires no context, it is the root of testing, however if it has given you some thought then that at least is a start. Now I would ask you to answer the question, it is used by many companies in the uk to assess prospective employees.

As to bias, I think you need to be prepared for bias since you will find that compromise on the amount and type of testing you have the time and resource to apply and so you will always be biasing your testing, but biasing it toward what?

Q2 - manual and then use automated regression when fixed, now who will develop the automated regression?

You say doing the same thing over and over will be rare, well be prepared for repetitive testing especially if you have found a showstopper but now cannot reproduce and you have to have a step by step list to do so for dev to fix!

Mind you you may find building test systems to be somewhat repetitive.
Comment by Conor Moore on December 29, 2011 at 7:59


@ Mark Crowther - Thanks for the link! I also had a quick scan and it looks like just what I need! :)

@ David Ramsay - Without pretention being my intent, the two questions you ask did somewhat puzzle me for a while, largely due to the thought process attached to each.

For example –

Question 1. Surely this cannot be answered, like many questions, without context. Surely a tester cannot hold one process with a higher esteem than others as it would end up creating a bias which would ultimately cause tests run to lose their impartiality.

Question 2 - With regards to test automation, the whole point of it, in my opinion, is to lighten the load on regression testing; however, again this all comes down to circumstance. Personally, if I were looking to find fault with a system I'd find that a manual analysis of the test subject would initially be more beneficial with regards to finding fault in it, then regression run once changes have been made to ensure that nothing else has been changed.

This is why I fell in love with Software Testing in the first place, the analysis required to perform it to a high degree is extremely engaging and the fact that two days being spent doing the same thing over and over would be fairly rare would be a great boost to my personal engagement with my work.


Thanks for the responses guys, always a pleasure to hear back from the community :)

Comment by Mark Crowther on December 28, 2011 at 10:34

Hiya Conor,

Just saw this tweeted by Mohinder (@mpkhosla)


Had a quick scan and not an in depth play with it but might be of use to you.



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