I have been busy with alot of things lately, keeping myself away from spare time blogging. So I just thought I would tell briefly about some of the events/working tasks that I have experienced, and would really enjoy some feedback on what is actually interesting enough for you, my readers to read a blog post about. So please comment on the things you want to know more about.
First out, I was on a nice competence weekend last weekend with Testway, were we gather all of us for friday morning – saturday lunch, learning new stuff and share knowledge. This time we had three main areas to talk about:
Lean test optimization
This is a product in the company portfolio, where two of us in a couple of smaller steps (workshop, analysis and tryouts), start with the current test process of a customer and make it more lean, removing obvious waste in a first iteration. Using baby steps of improvement in the current setting is easier than changing the whole process at once. The product consists of a complete first baby step during a week for the customer.
Cloud and testing
There is an obvious change within the industry towards using cloud solutions for hosting and running applications in the cloud. There are a couple of different settings to choose from depending on your needs. How can the whole concept be used for us as testers?
Selling consultancy services
Mainly about how we as a company are marketing ourselves and selling our services.
Apart from these things, we of course touched all the other amazing and exciting things to discuss during the weekend.
Monday I attended an internal workshop about The kanban game with Björn Granvik. This very interesting workshop Björn is going to have at Öredev together with Scott Belware. Starting with an introduction to Kanban and the concepts, we continued playing the game, getting a feel of the process itself.
Wednesday I attended another part of the course “Agile for experienced project managers” with Leadway. This is a course that is going to be taught in public, I think sometime in november. Tell me if you are interested in attending, Ill tell you when it is. This part was about how to scale agile and project dependencies. It also included a short story about how this can be done in practice.
This involved parts from a seminar that I attended three weeks ago with Petri Haapio, talking about Scrum implementation at Nokia Networks.
Then of course I have my daily work, which at the moment includes both Ruby/watir cucumber test automation of a web application as a Test Automation Launch Pad product and some big systems functional and pre-delivery testing at a larger company. These could both be full time jobs, but doing them both at 50% has been possible.
Apart from these things I am in the program committee of Öredev conference, responsible for the test track. That has also been taking some time.
That was a summary, and not even everything is mentioned. And I actually do have a private life as well, a little. I will add some pictures to the different topics later.
So please go ahead and tell me what would be the most interesting to read about, and Ill focus on that for a blog post. I have a somewhat problem focusing sometimes. I like the context switching even if it doesn’t give me the efficiency I want.
Öredev is coming up next week! Please register if you havent already, it is going to be awesome! Meet me there and discuss something exciting….
“I have heard a little on Kanban, which somewhat could be called an evolved agile or at least something in that direction. What i now am interesting in knowing is if these ideas, that are sprung from lean very much, affect or should affect the view of testing. What I do know, is how I would like to perform testing in the agile context. So what about kanban? Does it change the agile testing even more?”
The above quote is how I started this blog post some time ago. I didnt know how to continue in a somewhat professional manner. Part of that was because I had not gotten any picture in my head about how kanban works.
Yesterday, I attended the monthly Agile Skåne meeting, and one of the topics that was brought up was kanban. Since I was not the only one that didnt have so much of knowledge in it, we got a crash course in the form of a success story. While listening, I got some kind of vision of it.
Since I have been working alot with scrum, I had to ancor this kanban thing in scrum. I will now see kanban as scrum with the shortest sprints you can have, the size of a story. Then I will take into account another thing from kanban, the value stream context, which in my perspective means having only two places on the board that are allowed to have piles of cards, that is “Wishlist” and “Value for customer”. Having only these piles, while other categories like “implemented”, “tested”, “ready for test” or “ready for deployment” are not allowed to stack cards, you will get a flow of value towards the customer without leaving stories behind as untested.
While thinking of this, I realized that one issue with agile testing that has been bothering me for some time, and still does, will be easier in kanban. Why does testing in a scrum team many times end up in the discussion on “definition of done”? This is exactly one of the bigger issues I see when testing in the agile context. With this and the value stream context of kanban in mind, I realized that the fact that you extend the number columns on the board past the “sprint demo done” will visualize the testing in a more obvious way. This has the positive effect that the agile tester does not have to advocate testing as hard as sometimes is the case within developers. In the agile context, you can always add some columns when realizing where you want done to be, but in kanban this is default, meaning that the tester does not even have to argue for getting the “To test” column on the scrum board.
By only looking at this aspect of it, and imagining a little more about the kanban context, I would say that kanban is better suited for test than agile and scrum are. But I think Ill have to get back to this later on when having more knowledge of kanban.