Heads up on something interesting I saw just yesterday on twitter: James Bach
said: "For testers: what is an alternative to test cases and procedures? Answer: a testing playbook."
Oh. What's that? I read on. And smacked my forehead. Go and read the discussion to see why. But to give some idea:
"a testing playbook is a tool for sapient testing"" I want something much less expensive to produce and maintain, while making my testing way better.""A set of lists, tables, flows, combos-- a compact reference that allows me to do thorough exploratory testing."
"It is an aid to test design as well as test performance."
It's one of those ideas that makes perfect sense as soon as you hear it - and I wish I'd heard it about 7 months ago. It would have helped so much with the current MIS project - so much information, scattered across dozens of different specs, so much new to us, so much left unsaid...
Writing test scripts hasn't really helped so much to clarify things for us, as when you're working on a project where the devil is in the detail - and the detail is buried in hundreds of procedural test scripts - it becomes hard to see where there are areas you have missed. Hard to see how you came to the decision to choose this combination instead of that, write three tests on this flow, and none on another. I'd tried to pull some of that decision making out into a single document by putting together a high level test design, but with only partial success, I feel. We'd made some steps towards a playbook - creating mappings, state diagrams, sketches of business scenarios and what data was generated and by which feeds. But how I wish we'd had this idea, to encourage us to pull it all together.
You live and learn. This is definitely an idea I'll be using in the future.