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The Scrum apocalypse: changing the way we implement Scrum

I love Scrum. There, I said it. Yes, I know I am a married man, and I should not have another love next to my wife, but it is true and I am proud of it: I love Scrum. Every time I read the Scrum guide, I get butterflies in my stomach. It is like that one hot summer back in your teens, experiencing your first summer love. I love it. I may even be addicted to it. Last year, I wrote a blog about the Zombie Scrum apocalypse. I wrote about how we all should fight it. Heal the Scrum zombies and return to the heart and soul of Scrum. And to the butterflies in your stomach.

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An internship at spriteCloud

This entry is part 5 of 5 in the series Recruitment

We’re hearing from spriteCloud’s Commercial team again this week. Our new Marketing Intern, Rebecca Hogg, talks about what she has learned in her first month.

Learning the value of software testing

When I joined spriteCloud a little under one month ago, I was a total beginner when it came to software testing. The concept is seemingly easy to explain, but as I’ve learned, it goes much deeper. For example, did you know how many different things you can test when it comes to software? spriteCloud provides services such as functional testing, test automation, performance and load testing and mobile testing, and it doesn’t stop there. I knew software was complicated, but this is a real specialty. I’m still only scratching the surface when it comes to fully understanding what software testing is, but what I have learned has taught me that testing is a vital step in the software development life cycle.

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Testnet Spring Event 2017

Testnet – the largest professional organization for testers in the Netherlands – hosts yearly a large number of events. This year, the Testnet Spring Event 2017 was organized on 15th May. The theme was ‘Widen your base: new skills for testers’, with a variety of workshops and presentations.

One of these workshops was ‘Storytelling for testers’ hosted by René Tuinhout and Marinus Stam. This workshop gave a short introduction to storytelling with practical examples and Do’s and Don’ts. The workshop focused on how to build up a story, and how to tell the story. How to write the story is a logical next step, but not covered in this course.

So, why Storytelling?

Storytelling in software testing is an important aspect for testers, because we do it all the time. The trick with storytelling is to make the story powerful. Telling and writing stories can be used when creating test reports. A test report is a description, explanation or justification of the status of a test project, and is set up professionally and with care to serve the clients. A report is not just a summary of facts; it is a story about the facts.

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Mobile app testing: An introduction

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series Mobile app testing

In the world we are living in, cell phones have become a big part of our lives. We are spending more time on mobile devices than with the people present around us. We want to do every possible thing on our cell phones. Big companies like Amazon are creating their own line of apps to make it easier for their customers to access their services. Now with the kind of priority a mobile app has, we need to make sure that the app works as intended without any issues.

As a testing company we see that most of our clients are concentrating on making apps for iOS and Android. A few clients ask us to test their Windows OS client too. So how are we going to test the different apps? Are we going to test on a real device or are we going to use an emulator?

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Game testing – An Introduction

This entry is part 3 of 3 in the series Game Testing

“A delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is forever bad.”
– Shigeru Miyamoto

Game testing is a specific type of software testing focused on video games, that can be extended and used in the ever growing market of entertainment and educational software (apps, simulators, video games, presentations etc.)

As a part of software testing, most of the testing methodologies, practices and techniques will work and are used within game testing. Proper understanding of what is a defect (*bug), how can you find it and proper reporting and triaging (sorting of issues based on their level of priority) are the ‘bread and butter’ work of any tester involved in such projects.

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Why we test on physical devices

At spriteCloud, we have our own test lab consisting of a broad range of mobile devices to test on. As you can understand, in the current market of mobile phones, it can be difficult to keep a test lab up to date; new phones are released all year round. Updates to operating systems are pretty common. So we always look for tools which can help us testing on as many devices and OS versions as possible. There are quite some solutions to subscribe to, which offer a test lab with physical devices in the cloud. But why do we still maintain our own test lab? What makes it so necessary to test on a physical device which you are holding in your hand, instead of a physical device in the cloud? The last couple of weeks, I have been testing three of those cloud based solutions; browserstack, testingbot and crossbrowsertesting. I’m not going into details on these services. I just want to share one observation and elaborate a bit on that.

Currently, I am testing an ecommerce website for a client. For ecommerce websites, mobile is very important. A lot of traffic comes from mobile devices and tablets. A good responsive website is a must-have for every company active in ecommerce. So for testing, I have a pile of tablets and phones on my desk. Next to that, I’m using browserstack’s physical devices every now and then for debugging, or just because I need one specific device. Today, I discovered a bug on a scrollable menu; in Chrome on Android the scrollable menu … well …, was not scrollable. That’s quite inconvenient for the customer, since all clues indicate the menu is scrollable. Our frontend developer asked me to use browserstack to debug the issue. So we started browserstack, opened the console to check for errors, loaded the page, fastened our seatbelts, and tried to scroll. Tremendous was our surprise when we were able to scroll!

That got me thinking and made me smack my head a bit. Our first guess was that we couldn’t scroll, due to the touch input not being recognized correctly. At first I wanted to know how browserstack connects to their physical devices, since scrolling the menu on a desktop browser worked. My magic google skills did not give me an answer to that question, but I realised that the question was not relevant. No matter how my input is translated to the physical device in their test lab, it is not done by touching the screen with a finger (at least, I hope there are no testing minions in their test lab). This made me come to the conclusion that we always will need to test interactions on our physical devices instead of devices in the cloud. Probably, this is kicking in an open door, but I just forgot about it, since testing with browserstack went pretty well.

Does this mean tools like browserstack have a very limited value? Of course not. It is especially useful for testing different responsive views on a lot of different devices; it even has a special feature for that. But when you test interactions, make sure you always also test on a physical device in your hand. And let’s be honest; it is also pretty cool to be one of the first people to try out new devices and new versions of a mobile OS.

Gonzo QA: Fear and Loathing at Scrum Day Europe 2014 (part 2)

This entry is part 2 of 2 in the series Gonzo QA: Fear and Loathing at Scrum Day Europe 2014

A savage journey to the heart of evidence-based management for software organizations in 1,000 words or less

Dateline: 3 July 2014, Amsterdam

(Read part 1.)

Lunch-time sandwiches behind me, Forrester’s Diego lo Giudice’s Keynote: The State of Scaling Agile In The Age of The Customer roared into life in the ‘Grote zaal’. Sporting a sharp goatee and an even sharper suit, Diego started talking at 160 words per minute. Having warmed up on his introductory slides, he passed 250 words per minute on slide 4 and was soon speaking at speeds exceeding the limit of normal human comprehension, around 500 words per minute. Facts and figures filled the air. Nobody moved for fear of getting hit. Towards the middle of the presentation, smoke was clearly visible coming from the left hand side vent of his jacket. ‘*’-uniformed roadies immediately appeared on the stage and sprayed his torso with a thick coat of fire-retardant foam, allowing him to continue to present uninterrupted. Diego’s 27,500 word presentation finished without warning to deafening silence followed by thunderous applause. There was 5 minutes left for questions but we knew we had just witnessed a tour de force and there was nothing left to say.

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Gonzo QA: Fear and Loathing at Scrum Day Europe 2014 (part 1)

This entry is part 1 of 2 in the series Gonzo QA: Fear and Loathing at Scrum Day Europe 2014

A savage journey to the heart of evidence-based management for software organizations in 1,000 words or less

Dateline: 3 July 2014, Amsterdam

I approached Scrum Day Europe with a mixture of excitement and trepidation. Ken Schwaber was giving the opening and closing keynote speeches. Ken Schwaber! Ken co-developed the Scrum process and signed the Agile Manifesto. He founded the Agile Alliance, Scrum Alliance and Scrum.org and I was going to hear him speak. Would the first row of seats be reserved for acolytes dressed in white robes? Would the audience chant his name? Would there be fruit juice to drink at the end? The man who wrote ‘Scrum’s roles, artefacts, events, and rules are immutable and although implementing only parts of Scrum is possible, the result is not Scrum,’ does not sound tolerant of dissenters.

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Is SCRUM Agile?

Most people would agree that the answer to this question is “yes”. And I’d count myself amongst one of those people. However, I’ve witnessed and participated in a lot of projects that use SCRUM, but failed with exactly the issues that Agile wants to avoid. How is that possible?

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Software Lifecycle Consultancy

It feels like ages that I blogged about the place of QA in software development. Granted, in internet years, it has been a while. But the topic never seems to quite go away.

Since I wrote that other blog post, a lot of things have happened here at spriteCloud. In the meantime, we’ve been involved in the testing process with quite a few more customers (yay!). One thing that emerged over time is that many companies don’t exactly come to us for testing alone, but also for answering the question of how to fit testing into the development and release process.

When you try to answer that question, it quite often happens that you discover that the reason these companies didn’t know how to fit testing into their process is that there is not much of a process in place to fit testing into. To us QA-minded people, that may come as a surprise, but it really shouldn’t be.

As one young developer at one of our clients put it to me (slightly paraphrased): “They should really teach release management in university. Programming is easy enough to pick up, but this stuff is hard to figure out on your own.” I sympathize with that, as it mirrors my own experience from some ten years or so ago when I started out on my development career.

Before you can teach anything about development processes, though, it is essential that one understands the software lifecycle.

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Reputation. Meet spriteCloud

Find out today why startups, SMBs, enterprises, brands, digital agencies, e-commerce, and mobile clients turn to spriteCloud to help improve their customer experiences. And their reputation. With complete range of QA services, we provide a full service that includes test planning, functional testing, test automation, performance testing, consultancy, mobile testing, and security testing. We even have a test lab — open to all our clients to use — with a full range of devices and platforms.

Discover how our process can boost your reputation.