Testing


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SPaMCAST 460 features our interview with Peter Varhol.  Peter and I discussed machine learning and AI, and how it will impact software development and testing.  We also discussed how anyone can stay current and enhance their careers.

Peter’s Bio

Peter Varhol is a well-known writer and speaker on software and technology topics, having authored dozens of articles and spoken at a number of industry conferences and webcasts. He has advanced degrees in computer science, applied mathematics, and psychology, and is Principal at his company, Technology Strategy Research, LLC. His past roles include technology journalist, software product manager, software developer, and university professor.

Twitter: @pvarhol

Blog: https://pvarhol.wordpress.com/

Email:peter@petervarhol.com

A promo for 2017 Agile Leadership Summit:

Mark your calendar for an entirely new class of business conference. More “business theater” than conference, the 2017 Agile Leadership Summit (September 22nd in Washington, DC) is sponsored by AgileCxO (agilecxo.org). It features an integrated mix of six vignettes on Agile leadership, two fantastic industry keynotes, and onstage jazz musicians who are demonstrating agility, iteration, and excellence throughout. Learn more at http://agilecxo.org.

For other events SPaMCAST team members will be attending check the recent blog entry titled Upcoming Conferences and Webinars!

Re-Read Saturday News

This week Steven dives into Chapter 9 of Paul Gibbons’ book The Science of Successful Organizational Change.  Chapter 9 is the capstone of the book, putting all of the pieces-parts together.  Steve is tackling Chapter 9 in two parts.  Two more weeks are left in this re-read.

Vote for the next re-read book here!

This week and previous installments: (more…)

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SPaMCAST 454 features three columns!  The first is our essay and checklists on iteration planning. Aristotle stated that “well begun is half done.”  While we might argue the half part, planning is required to be well begun and that is important on any measurement scale.

Jeremy Berriault delivers a new entry in the  QA Corner.  In this installment of the QA Corner, we discuss the function of a QA Lead. Check out Jeremy’s blog at the QA Corner!

Gene Hughson anchors the cast with his Form Follows Function blog to the SPaMCAST to discuss the entry,  Trash or Treasure – What’s Your Legacy? Gene begins with the contentious topic of legacy systems.

Re-Read Saturday News

We continue re-reading The Science of Successful Organizational Change.  Steven Adams is leading this re-read.  In this week’s entry, we cover the introduction to Part 2 and chapter 3.  Gibbon’s takes us down the path of strategy and uncertainty. Remember to buy your copy.   

This week and previous installments:

Week 1: Game Plan

Week 2: Introduction   

Week 3: Failed Change

Week 4:  Introduction to Part 1 and Fragility to Change-Agility

Week 5: Governance and the Psychology of Risk

 

A Call To Action (more…)

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SPaMCAST 448 features our essay on uncertainty. Al Pittampalli said, “uncertainty and complexity produce anxiety we wish to escape.” Dealing with uncertainty is part of nearly everything we do our goal should be to address uncertainty head on.

The second column features Steve Tendon talking about Tame The Flow: Hyper-Productive Knowledge-Work Performance, The TameFlow Approach and Its Application to Scrum and Kanban published J Ross (buy a copy here). We tackle Chapter 18.  

Our third column is the return of Jeremy Berriault and his QA Corner. Jeremy discusses leading in  QA.  Jeremy  blogs at https://jberria.wordpress.com/

Re-Read Saturday News

Chapter 10 concludes our re-read of Holacracy: The New Management System for a Rapidly Changing World by Brian J. Robertson which was published by Henry Holt and Company in 2015.  This week’s chapter is titled, The Experience of Holacracy. In this chapter, Robertson wraps up most of the loose ends. Next week we will conclude this re-read with some final comments and thoughts. (more…)

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This week’s Software Process and Measurement Cast features our essay revisiting the product owner role. The product owner role is hard, often messed up and a great opportunity for improvement.

The second column features the return of Steve Tendon talking about Tame The Flow: Hyper-Productive Knowledge-Work Performance, The TameFlow Approach and Its Application to Scrum and Kanban published J Ross (buy a copy here). We tackle Chapter 17 which is titled Challenges of Work-State Work in Process Limits. WIP limits have their plusses and minuses when discussing hyper-productivity.  

Our third column this week is from Jeremy Berriault. Jeremy discusses how to show the value of QA and why knowing and showing value is important!   Jeremy  blogs at https://jberria.wordpress.com/  

 

Re-Read Saturday News

This week we tackle Chapter 6 of Holacracy: The New Management System for a Rapidly Changing World by Brian J. Robertson published by Henry Holt and Company in 2015.   Chapter 6, Facilitating Governance, puts the ideas and processes defined in governance to work. (more…)

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The Software Process and Measurement Cast 440 features our essay on two storytelling techniques: premortems and business obituaries.  Almost all work that takes more than a few days is subject to risks that are not immediately obvious without some form of structured process to focus the team’s thought process. Teams often use storytelling techniques to generate a big picture/vision to guide a project or to help people frame their thoughts. A story provides a deeper and more nuanced connection between the team and information than most lists of PowerPoint bullets or a structured requirements documents. The same storytelling skill can be used as a risk management tool. Premortums and business obituaries are structured techniques for using storytelling for risk management.

Our second column is from Jeremy Berriault. Jeremy discusses the importance of conferences for learning new ideas and for networking.  Jeremy suggests that if you are have not learned new ways to test and you are testing the same way you were last year then you are falling behind. Jeremy  blogs at https://jberria.wordpress.com/  

Jon M Quigley brings his column, The Alpha and Omega of Product Development, to the Cast. In this installment, Jon discusses mental models and their impact on how you develop and deliver value.  One of the places you can find Jon is at Value Transformation LLC.

Re-Read Saturday News

Chapter 3 of Holacracy completes Part 1 by laying out the structure needed for an organization to be able to quickly and continuously evolve how authority is distributed.  An organization’s structure needs to be conducive to the processes needed to distribute authority.  This chapter provides an alternative to the classic pyramid structure of organization design which is typically out of date, irrelevant and difficult to change.

Visit the Software Process and Measurement Cast blog to participate in this and previous re-reads.

A Call To Action

I need your help. I have observed that most podcasts and speakers at conferences over-represent people from Europe and North America.  I would like to work on changing that exposure. I would like to develop a feature featuring alternate software development voices beginning with Africa and Southeast Asia. If this feature works we will extend it to other areas.   If you can introduce me to practitioners that would be willing to share their observations (short interviews) I would be appreciative!

Next SPaMCAST

The next Software Process and Measurement Cast will feature our interview with John Le Drew.  John and I discussed the concept of safety at work and how safety, or the lack of it, affects software teams.  John is the host of the Agile Path Podcast I recommend you check out his podcast but make sure you are back here for our interview next week!

Shameless Ad for my book!

Mastering Software Project Management: Best Practices, Tools and Techniques co-authored by Murali Chematuri and myself and published by J. Ross Publishing. We have received unsolicited reviews like the following: “This book will prove that software projects should not be a tedious process, for you or your team.” Support SPaMCAST by buying the book here. Available in English and Chinese.

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The Software Process and Measurement Cast 438 features our essay on leveraging sizing in testing. Size can be a useful tool for budgeting and planning both at the portfolio level and the team level.

Gene Hughson brings his Form Follows Function Blog to the cast this week to discuss his recent blog entry titled, Organizations as Systems and Innovation. One of the highlights of the conversation is whether emergence is a primary factor driving change in a complex system.

Our third column is from the Software Sensei, Kim Pries.  Kim discusses why blindly accepting canned solutions does not negate the need for active troubleshooting of for problems in software development.

Re-Read Saturday News

This week, we tackle chapter 1 of Holacracy: The New Management System for a Rapidly Changing World by Brian J. Robertson published by Henry Holt and Company in 2015. Chapter 1 is titled, Evolving Organization.  Holacracy is an approach to address shortcomings that have appeared as organizations evolve. Holacracy is not a silver bullet, but rather provides a stable platform for identifying and addressing problems efficiently.

Visit the Software Process and Measurement Cast blog to participate in this and previous re-reads.

Next SPaMCAST

The next Software Process and Measurement Cast will feature our interview with Alex Yakyma.  Our discussion focused on the industry’s broken mindset that prevents it from being Lean and Agile.  A powerful and possibly controversial interview.

Shameless Ad for my book!

Mastering Software Project Management: Best Practices, Tools and Techniques co-authored by Murali Chematuri and myself and published by J. Ross Publishing. We have received unsolicited reviews like the following: “This book will prove that software projects should not be a tedious process, for you or your team.” Support SPaMCAST by buying the book here. Available in English and Chinese.

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Which size metric makes sense for a testing organization is influenced by how testing is organized, where testing is incorporated into the value delivery chain, and whether the work is being done for a fee. (more…)

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