Delhi Testers Meetup- The Power of Conferring (The Pragmatic Testing)

On November 1, 2015, in Syndicated, by Association for Software Testing

On my recent visit to India, Santhosh Tuppad (@santhoshst) decided to travel to New Delhi with few of his colleagues so that we all can meet. On my suggestion Santhosh organized a public event instead. The Delhi Testers Meetup (or TEAM-Delhi) was born and was planned for Sunday, 27 September 2015.  
I called the meetup TEAM-Delhi because Test Engineering Alliance Meetup (TEAM) in Melbourne has been a very successful meetup since its inception and testers in Delhi exhibited similar passion and engagement when we announced the meetup in Delhi.
The meetup was at a hotel’s conference room and the hotel staff arranged the room in a formal classroom structure. But I wanted my Exploratory Testing workshop and other discussions more interactive, so we began the meetup by moving tables & chairs around. The benefit of this movement was that it started informal talks among people. I did not realize that passionate testers can turn anything into a worthwhile valuable discussion. It was a good beginning.
Testers who attended the meetup were: Santhosh, Dwarika, Alka, Siddharth, Devangna, Sahas, Atul, Nitin, Rupinder, Ramit and Kapil. After a while Smita Mishra also arrived who is organizing a Testing conference in Delhi along with Rapid Software Testing class with James Bach.

I started the Exploratory testing workshop by giving a snapshot of context-driven testing and the strong community support that Context-Driven testers get. I focussed on following topics in my workshop:
– Definition of Exploratory testing
– Changes in definition over the years and the latest from ET3.0– Skills of a good exploratory tester – Note taking, exploration, experimentation, questioning, study, modeling, observation, inference etc.

We talked about Heuristics and mnemonics (“rules of thumb”), Oracles (how to recognize problems), Session-Based Test Management (SBTM) and cheating. Some of the good exploration skills that we talked about were self management, critical thinking, developing test ideas, examining a product and telling compelling testing stories.  
An important part of the workshop was to explain ET from Rapid Software Testing namespace perspective. RST has its own namespace and I believe that any practitioner who teaches ET should keep that in mind.
Another important aspect of my workshop was the exercises. We worked on various exercises including developing testing idea for a simple program that calculates two integers, testing a basic calculator and testing an image. I explained through exercises that testers can miss bugs because of inattentional blindness. We looked at Google calendar to understand oracles.
There was a lot of discussion and everyone was contributing. When we discussed about questioning skill, Ramit mentioned 635 technique (Method 6-3-5).  We talked about effect of culture on testers (and testing) and then there was another discussion about testing conferences and their value.
Santhosh shared his views & experience on Security testing and very soon the discussion digressed to emotions, at which point Santhosh explained Plutchik’s wheel of emotions. From there the discussion moved to Persona-based testing and that led to a question whether testers can actually test like users or not. There was a mention of colorology but I do not remember the context in which it was mentioned.
The passion and energy in the room was contagious. Even those who I considered reticent, participated well in all discussions. It was a free-flow of ideas and I did not stop anyone from contributing or digressing.
I learned so much from everyone and I am sure all learned a lot too. This is what I call power of conferring.
Thanks to TestInsane for organizing the event.

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