Thursday, January 25, 2007

Tester Tested !

Here is an amazing post on the blog of Pradeep Soundararajan called Tester Tested !

Once while at work I was getting my test cases reviewed about a project/domain which I was new to and one of my colleague gave a strong comment "Pradeep , please think of more cases".

I was a bit dissapointed because already there were enough test cases that it will take 3 days to complete a cycle and I thought "should I further shoot at my own legs ?" ( the more cases I write , more I have to test , its painful , isnt it ? ) .

I tried to defend that testing would become complex if more cases are there than beyond the objective of the release/product requirements.

Ha ! thanks to what I told , he tshared with me a great story which happened in his previous company and it is one of the best lessons I have had as a tester !

__ This (could be a) is True Story that happened in some company ___

A digital camera was released in the market and after sometime a customer came back complaining that .......

Problem :The camera's software was crashing continously while he tried to capture images.

FIR : They first asked some basic information from the customer and made an attempt to reproduce the issue but it was not reproducible.

Analysis :

1) Software is crashing - so they listed out all possible scenarios where the software could crash.
2) Tried putting the camera to all listed possibilities.
3) Giving a report to the management that it was unable to be reproduced.

Further Analysis :

Taking this as a challenge , a great tester had the following concern -

1) He was concerened what festival was it ?
2) He was concerned what was the customer was trying to capture ?
3) He was concerned what is the frequency of the crash the customer noticed ?
4) He was concerened about all other surrounding factors like temperuature , place where the festival was celebrated ... etc ?

Outcome of Analysis :

1) The festival was Diwali or Deepavali !
2) The customer was trying to capture fire crackers , explosion , fireworks display in an open ground at around 22 00 hours ( night ).

What a fantastic tester was he !

He identified the problem and told the developers

"The camera software is crashing when the viewfinder is black ( because of dark night ) and a sudden gush of light through the firecracker explosion is putting the DSP ( digital signal processor ) to a load/stress beyond its boundaries to display the image. And at this point of time when the user tries to capture it simply crashes"

What he said ?

was right !

Finally they fixed it and now today its a robust digital camera !

____ End of a probable true story _____

Summary of lessons -

1) Collect real time data for testing a product/application.
2) When you are unable to reproduce an issue , think out of the box , think out of the black box.
3) When you are unable to reproduce an issue call someone who can dig deeper than you.
4) Dont assign test case draft to the person who is going to test it, he may omit complicated cases to bring down his/her complexity in executing it.
5) Review the cases with a non team member/customers/domain specailist/tester network.
6) When you release a product : aniticpate and be prepared to face such situation.
7) Hate the product while testing and love the product after its release - emotional testing ( ha new concept introduced by me , i do it , to be frank )
8) Good Testers not only report bugs , they suggest a solution ! ( more to come abt this )
9) Keep learning to be a good tester !
10) Test all your products in India , its Testing Bowl of the world !
11) Dont terminate an issue just because you are unable to reproduce , it could kill your company !

"If you are a good tester you win your customers heart , Mind it she could be beautiful !"


At 8:44 PM, Blogger Pradeep Soundararajan said...

Thank you for posting this. I myself enjoy reading my posts and that is why I keep writing, to enjoy.

Best wishes to you,too.


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