Agile Testing Days, Conferences and some thoughts

I’ve been lucky enough to attend Agile Testing Days in Germany for 3 years now.

This year they moved it from Berlin to Potsdam (not too far from Berlin). Unfortunately I didn’t get much chance to see Potsdam, but it looks like a beautiful place to visit with sightseeing in mind.

As usual Jose and his team create an amazingly welcoming and friendly event. The food and drink is top class and the entertainment is excellent. It seems to be one of the few events I’ve attended where there is as much emphasis on socialising and having fun, as there is on the speaking. Almost everyone I talked to said the same thing; the talks sow the seeds but the true learning happens during the conversations at the social events.

The Keynotes were great, the sessions were brilliant and as usual the Test Lab was great. I managed to stay around this year and catch some of the Open Spaces which appeared to work well.

One of the keynotes that really got me thinking was Michael Bolton’s talk. During the talk he talked about science and testing science using scientific methods. When he moved to social sciences though was when I really started to make some notes. I think this is going to be an amazing area of learning for many testers. The field of social science is vast but there are pockets of interesting work going on. It’s the start of potentially the new direction for testing; a direction where we look at what it is that we do when we test, how our work affects people and how we can use social science research techniques to aid and understand our testing.

Expect to read a lot more about the social sciences from many sources.

I’ve been writing about tech in society with a group of people interested in ethnography and social change through design and I intend to fold some of that work here, so expect a slight change in direction as I bring my blog more in-line with my current work, ideas and main social science interests. It will obviously still be about testing…….

But that’s the point. Testing is changing (or we’re looking at it differently)

At Agile Testing Days I saw how other people were altering their outlooks and approaches, and this gives me a warm fuzzy feeling; it feels like we’re talking less about the “good old days”. (which I believe weren’t as good as many people think)

And when you come away from a conference feeling like change is in the air and people are ready for the challenges, then that’s the sign of a good conference.

I’ll be at EuroSTAR conference next week. I’m looking forward to meeting many people who are already doing some really exciting things in the Testing world.

I’m still processing my notes from this weeks Agile Testing Days, no doubt I’ll have loads more next week too.

2 thoughts to “Agile Testing Days, Conferences and some thoughts”

  1. Well said Rob. I think you already know my views on the importance of the social sciences and how much of an affect it can have on software. It is a huge untapped resource that testers should start to investigate.As Bob Dylan once said.The Times They Are A-changin’Come writers and critics (and bloggers.)Who prophesize with you pen (computer)Keep your eyes wideThe chance won’t come again.(Sorry to any die hard Dylan fans for playing around with the lyrics)

  2. John – Nice…A Bob Dylan song…Time, they are indeed a-changinThanks for commenting.

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