How do we know when we’ve done enough exploratory testing?

This was written in reply to a suggestion on that we can’t decide when we’ve done enough ad hoc or exploratory testing. The original poster asked: Can you predict how much time such testing stage will take? What are grounding your estimates on? When do you have a chance to adjust your estimates? Is not it too late? And what are you doing in case it is? How do … Read more

Context-driven thinking… or not

I revisited this passage recently. I’ve added the emphasis. [quote] I am going to describe my personal views about managing large software developments. I have had various assignments during the past nine years, mostly concerned with the development of software packages for spacecraft mission planning, commanding, and post-flight analysis. In these assignments I have experienced different degrees of success with respect to arriving at an operational state, on-time, and within … Read more

Medieval Tech Support

Mark Federman is the author (with Derrick deKerckhove) of McLuhan for Managers, a wonderfully accessible book on McLuhan’s principles applied to more recent ideas about technological innovation. Mark was the first person to point me to this (, which I anticipate will shortly be all over the Web. Although I can see his comments in my aggregator, I can’t see them on his blog yet. To sum them up: the … Read more

A Fairy Tale from Jerry Weinberg

One good reason for reading Michael Hunter’s blog: He’ll help make sure you don’t miss thing like this (–a new fairy tale from Jerry Weinberg. Kids (and their grandfathers) say the darndest things.

The White Glove Heuristic and The "Unless…" Heuristic

Part of the Rapid Software Testing philosophy involves reducing waste wherever possible. For many organizations, documentation is an area where we might want to cut the clutter. It’s not that documentation is valueless, but every minute that we spend on documentation is a minute that we can’t spend on any other activity. Thus the value of the documentation has to be compared not only to its own cost, but to … Read more

Matt Heuser’s Testing Challenge

Hopeless. Absolutely hopeless. Lots of important work to do, and this testing challenge steals an hour from me. Matt Heuser posted it on his blog. When James Bach and I pose testing problems like this at one another, we offer the opportunity to provide a quick, practical or deep answer. Here’s mine. It ain’t quick. It’s fairly deep, but I hope it’s also reasonably practical. To start with, I think … Read more

Why Settle for Unit Tests?

There’s a principle in some circles that suggest that the full suite of regression tests be run after each build, or at the end of each iteration, or before each release. Typically when people talk about stuff like that, they don’t bother to specify what they mean by “full”, or “regression tests”, or even “the” (these tests, but no others?), so it’s hard to tell whether the suggestion is reasonable … Read more