Exploration Through Example

Example-driven development, Agile testing, context-driven testing, Agile programming, Ruby, and other things of interest to Brian Marick
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Mon, 22 Aug 2005

OOPSLA hotel room promotion

Richard P. Gabriel, program chair of OOPSLA, has started a promotion. The person who refers the most attendees by September 15 (up to a max of one per day) gets to stay in rpg's suite. (Hotels "comp" conference organizers with free suites. It's one of the compensations for doing the work.) I don't care about staying in a suite. What attracts me is the idea of a free hotel room. If you register through the link in this paragraph or the image on the right, you will subsidize my cheapskatery.

Or you may prefer to compete with me.

## Posted at 09:29 in category /conferences [permalink] [top]

More on counterexamples

Andy Schneider responded to my counterexamples post with the following. I think they're neat ideas.

  1. I express project scope in terms of what the project is delivering and what it is not delivering. I learnt to do this in 1994, after listening to a bunch of people interpret my scope statements in different ways, depending on what they wanted to read into them. On the surface it seems daft to list all the things a project is not, it'd be a long list. However, there is always some obvious set of expectations you know you're aren't going to fill and some obvious confusions. I use those to draw up my 'Is Not' Lists.

  2. I'm writing a lot of papers laying down design principles for common architectural scenarios, trying to get some re-use at the design level and also trying to improve productivity by having the boring stuff already sorted for 80% of the cases. I communicate my principles with a narrative text within which the user 'discovers' the principles (which I highlight so it can be read by consuming the principles). At the end of the paper I normally write a section labelled something like implications. Here i walk through a set of counter-examples that describe practices that contradict the principles. This gets people to think about the implications of what's being said. Creates me a bunch of work working through the feedback, as these sections always elicit more feedback than the rest. If I didn't provide counter-examples no one would consider the space not covered or excluded by the principles.

    So, I've learnt it is useful, I have seen the fact it gets people to think about what something is not and the feedback from people is always better for it. In many ways it is opposite to a politician's approach, where they avoid counterexamples because they want you to read into their words what you want to. They don't want you to consider the space not covered or excluded.

(Reprinted with permission.)

## Posted at 08:47 in category /ideas [permalink] [top]

About Brian Marick
I consult mainly on Agile software development, with a special focus on how testing fits in.

Contact me here: marick@exampler.com.




Agile Testing Directions
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Testers on agile projects

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Working your way out of the automated GUI testing tarpit
  1. Three ways of writing the same test
  2. A test should deduce its setup path
  3. Convert the suite one failure at a time
  4. You should be able to get to any page in one step
  5. Extract fast tests about single pages
  6. Link checking without clicking on links
  7. Workflow tests remain GUI tests
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Design-Driven Test-Driven Design
Creating a test
Making it (barely) run
Views and presenters appear
Hooking up the real GUI


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