After getting Satisficed, I find myself craving for more testing exercises. I have started to work on my own exercises for coaching my full time student Rajesh.
The exercises are usually ad-hoc.When I say ad-hoc, I mean we both go out for a walk and I see something, get an idea and throw an exercise to him. I attach a testing context to it and I set traps. A tester is supposed to clear the traps and accomplish the mission.
Such exercises are helping me to think of ideas, set traps, clear traps and pair testing. Michael Bolton, once gave me an exercise, 2+2=4 and it is that exercise, which made me realize exercises are everywhere.
Here it goes, "A bullet and car glass exercise" that Rajesh and I were playing yesterday:
A man fires a bullet from his gun, aiming at a car window glass. The glass remains undamaged.
List the possibilities for the glass remaining undamaged.
(you might want to work on the above exercise before you have a look at our answer)
- Glass is bullet proof
- It was a toy gun with a plastic/rubber bullet.
- Aim was not proper.
- Car moved.
- The object did look like a glass but it wasn't.
- Someone inside the car, opened the door/window.
- The man shot at the reflection of the car/glass window.
- It was a mirage.
- The barrel was bent in an angle.
- Someone/object/bird/animal, came in between.
- Car was protected by an invisible shield ( As shown in the movie "Independance Day")
- The man shot from a distance more than the range of the gun.
- The man shot the bullet from underwater, the bullet lost its potential or momentum to break the glass.
- The car was in a paper advertisement and the person reading the paper changed the page by the time the man fired a bullet.
- In some Indian movies, the hero catches a fast moving bullet with his bare hands. There is a possibility that an Indian hero caught the bullet before it hit the glass. :)
- The bullet was deviated due a strong wind/storm.
- The time the man was pulling the trigger, someone shot him.
- The barrel was blocked.
- The glass we are talking is not the same car window glass.
- The man always missed his aim by a couple of metres.
- The car was inside a showroom protected by transperent bullet proof doors/windows.
It appears to me that such an exercise, helps a tester in coming out with test ideas, brainstorming the possible situations of a bug found by the customer, reproducing the bugs that are found by non-test teams/clients/end-user.
I see many testers struggling for ideas. Working through such exercises can improve spontaneous idea generation, which helps when practiced and put in testing projects.
Here is another one:
The image you see above, is a screen shot taken from PuTTY. I had enabled logging the session and the image you see above pops up, each time I try to login.
You might observe the options "Yes" , "No" and "Cancel". If you take a careful look you might also observe a "Close" button "X" on the top right corner. Now, work through this:
- What is the difference between "Cancel" and "Close"?
- How would you test "Cancel" and "Close" functions?
- If "Cancel" and "Close" produce the same result to end user, can one of them be removed?
- Why would a user prefer to have both?
- If you were to design this window; what would be your design considerations?
- What evidence would you give or look for to differentiate "Cancel" and "Close" as two different operations?
- On finding an evidence that "Cancel" and "Close" are two different operations, would you log a bug for a situation where you are testing a different application that has "Cancel" and "Close", as same operations?
- What are your test ideas and oracles to test this? ( Oracle: is a principle or mechanism used to recognize a problem)
- List all possible applications that you have toured and tested, which has a "Cancel" and "Close" and also try remembering whether all of them behaved in the same way.
Asking a lot of questions like these helps you develop your questioning, clears assumptions, find bugs and see the smallest things in front of you as the most challenging and learning opportunities.
You have exercises everywhere. If you need to see them, you need to have a passion towards the craft, a passion to better yourselves as a tester and "(smart)testers way of thinking" and willingness to help other testers.
(I vaguely remember James saying this to me, if I worded it wrong, James would correct me)
Pradeep Soundararajan - http://testertested.blogspot.com - +91-98451-76817 - firstname.lastname@example.org
"Pradeep's first language is not English--his first language appears to be testing." -- Michael Bolton