Agile Testing – Preventing Defects over Finding Failures

J     Start Time : 08:30     End Time : 12:30

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With the move from sequential, ‘waterfall’ development life cycles to Agile, the role of the tester is evolving from detecting failures to preventing defects. Practices such as Test First and Acceptance Test Driven Development mean testers work with business stakeholders to understand ‘what’ is to be built, before programmers consider ‘how’ it will be built. This positions testers in the center of the ‘communication gap’ between those who understand the problem domain (customers, product managers) and the experts in the solution domain (architects, developers). The overlap between these two domains, and the diverse roles within each, is where innovation happens. Recognising and understanding this ‘Innovation Space’ (a key concept in Lean product development known as ‘Ba’ in Japanese) is essential in fostering innovation.

In this tutorial we will present some of the emerging practices and artifacts used by testers to facilitate communication and collaboration between these domains. We look at how the role of testing is moving from a ‘necessary evil’ to ensure some standard of quality, to a value-adding role in preventing defects and the costs associated with them. We will look at how innovating the role of the tester can help support innovation in the development process itself.

This tutorial will be presented by an IT veteran of 25 years, with over 12 years using, training and coaching in the area of agile development. We’ll briefly discuss some of the theory behind relevant agile practices before illustrating them with interactive exercises and real-world examples. Some of the topics covered will include:

  • Test Driven Design – separating the logical design (what the feature should do) from the physical design (how it should do it)
  • Replacing Specifications with User Stories and Acceptance Criteria to foster innovation and drive early validation
  • Specification by Example and Acceptance Test Driven Development
  • The ‘Economies of Speed’ applied to test – how early, fast testing reduces the cost of quality
  • Automated Regression Testing – enabling iterative, agile delivery by investing in long-term test capacity
  • Speaker

  • Colm OhEocha - , AgileInnovations, Ireland

    In the last five years as a trainer, coach and consultant, Colm has helped a wide range of companies in adopting agile methods. These include global corporations like Intel, Ericsson and HP, mid-sized firms such as Openet, Payzone, Openjaw and Paddy Power and even start-ups like Duolog, Akari and SoftCo.

    Colm is founder and principle of AgileInnovation, an approved supplier to Enterprise Irelands’ “Lean Business Offer” support fund. Colm is also founder of AgileIreland, a community of agile practicioners, and speaks at international and national conferences on agile and lean product development.

    Colm (B.E., M.E.) is an IT industry veteran, with 20+ years design, development and test experience. His interest in Lean Thinking began when automating Just-In-Time production lines in the 1980s. Implementing early agile software methods in 2001, Colm has extensive hands-on experiences across teams, organisations and technologies. In varied roles of developer, tester, architect, ScrumMaster and Director of R&D;, he has seen Lean and Agile from a variety of perspectives. These include the use of agile in the development of enterprise systems, embedded software, high-innovation research environments and in product organisations.

    Colm delivers on-site and public courses such as Agile for Executives, ScrumMaster, Product Owner, Kanban and training in the Scalable Agile Framework (SAFe). He supports companies adopting these methods through assessments, consulting and team coaching.