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Blogs on this site

Crowdsourcing and Testing: Can it work?

Crowdsourcing is a buzzword increasingly being bandied about nowadays and the 'crowd' is a new paradigm for resourcing some activities. Is testing one of them?

This post was inspired by a discussion topic on the TMF group on LinkedIn posted by William Montague of Intechnica: Some companies test applications from home PCs located at the end of ADSL lines. Is this form of testing valid?. The post sets a technical question and doesn't mention crowdsourcing, but it seems to me that there's a practical management and commercial challenge related to crowdsourcing to explore too.

I don't think that many companies are yet using a 'crowd' to test. appear to be the foremost promoters of this approach in the US. It hasn't penetrated the UK testing market much - yet. There are some informal arrangements in place at one or two companies I've met, but using the crowd is one of those notions that seems to have great promise - at first glance.

This post explores the options for crowdsourcing testing and isn't obvious to me how it can work.

23rd Test Management Forum


The 23rd Test Management forum will take place on Wednesday 29th July
at the conference centre at Balls's Brothers, Minster Pavement.
Testing Tags: 

Give yourself a sporting chance

... to succeed and find work in difficult times

Everyone should know that even the best sports stars in the world have a coach. Whether it's golf, tennis or football, there's always a new trick to learn that sets you apart from the crowd, and gives you an advantage to help you succeed.

So why don't technical people have a coach?

Even if you are known as the hottest developer on the planet and you're using the latest tools, wouldn't it be cool if you could elicit a clear requirements specification from your customers?

22nd Test Management Forum - 29 April 2009

The 23rd Test Management forum took place on Wednesday 29th
at the conference centre at Balls's Brothers, Minster Pavement.

The meeting was sponsored by our patrons:

We are most grateful to our generous patrons.


Reducing Waste in the Test cycle, Paul Rolfe, HP
An open discussion to share ideas of how to reduce waste in terms of the cost, time and effort involved in the test cycle.
Attendees are encouraged to bring along examples and ideas and the format will be informal.
Agile Development and Test in Practice, John sweet, BSkyB
At Sky Network Services agile development methodologies were introduced in January 2006 to build a new broadband provisioning system for the broadband and telephony division of Sky TV. This talk will include a brief introduction to agile methodologies, how the practises and processes were introduced at SNS and how they work today. Although introducing agile methodologies may seem like a long and painful uphill task, this talk will seek to show how, once achieved, the methods work really well to deliver good quality software to challenging timescales in a changing environment at a sustainable pace (i.e. no developer or tester burn out!)
Designing for Testability - Technical Focus, Adam Knight

Two linked sessions addressing the vital topic of designing systems and
applications to facilitate effective testing..
Managing Outsourcing - Case Study, Mike Bartley, Independent
One of the likely consequences of the current economic climate is that companies will look to reduce their fixed costs through outsourcing. This presentation considers how to set up and manage an outsourced (and offshored) software testing capability to give strategic benefits beyond cost savings.
Cost-Based Analysis and ROI of Automation, Aidus McVeigh, Sogeti

Why is it that every time Automation is implemented; whether it is using Enterprise tools, creating a Unit test Suite or an API Framework, the topic of cost-based analysis & ROI is shunned? We are expected to ‘guarantee’ that Automation will become the silver bullet of Technology and save the day. But how can we do this when so much (if not all) of the benefits are intangible? This session will look at this ongoing struggle, why it exists, how to overcome it and why ROI really is your friend.
Designing for Testability - Management Focus, Dave Evans, SQS

Session two will deal with the management, “political”, organisational and
economic dimensions.

Second-hand Books for Sale

On 7 August 2005, I sold a spare copy of Fred Brook's 'Mythical Man Month' for a few quid on Amazon. It's the only time I used the site to sell anything so naturally, I had quite forgotten that I'd done this.

Today, I received an email from Amazon saying my account was in credit and asking for bank details so they could pay me. Maybe the poor interest they are earning on my banked cash triggered their sudden efficiency. I followed the link provided and discovered that I'd sold the book long, long ago.

So now it occurs to me that I might sell a few more books.

Test Management Summit Materials

Many thanks to all the sponsors, delegates, facilitators and the IOD staff for making the 2009 Summit so enjoyable.

We've posted the programme and all facilitator materials on the permanent page for the 2009 Summit here:

One or two are late arriving - we're chasing up on those.

July Test Management Forum

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