personal improvement

Conference Presentations

STARWEST 2018 The Art of Software Investigation
Slideshow

Although processes and tools play an important role in software testing, the most important testing tool is the mind. Like scientists, testers search for new knowledge and share discoveries—hopefully for the betterment of people’s lives. More than sixty years ago, William I.B. Beveridge reframed discussion of scientific research in his classic book The Art of Scientific Investigation. Rather than add to the many texts on the scientific method, he focused on the mind of the scientist. Join Ben Simo as he applies Beveridge’s principles and techniques for scientific investigation to software testing today. Learn to discover and communicate new knowledge that matters; to think—and test—like scientists; and to continually prepare, experiment, exploit chance, imagine productively, apply intuition and reason, tune observation, and overcome resistance.

Ben Simo
STARWEST 2018 Working with Anxiety: From Personal Weakness to Career Strength
Slideshow

Each of us has personal weaknesses that are often perceived to have negative impacts on performance and capability in the workplace. When this weakness is prominent to yourself or others, are you capable of benefiting IT teams and qualified to do the job? In dealing with negative impacts of her Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Julene Johnson falls into this category and has experienced personal doubt in her ability to perform her job well. Over time, however, she’s noticed that habits and techniques developed while dealing with anxiety can be applied in a manner that improves her life and her career and gives confidence to others in her capabilities. Similarly, skills and abilities gained while working as a tester have helped her build successful patterns in her life to help her manage anxiety more effectively.

Julene Johnson
STARWEST 2018 Be the Lord of Your OWN Rings: How to Build Your OWN Insider Testing Program
Slideshow

Many testers just don't plain get listened to. Management doesn’t seem to listen despite you having a really good idea on how to reduce costs without reducing quality. How can a well-meaning tester act as an agent of change and change your corporate landscape? Dona is the Lord of the Rings at Microsoft where she co-creates the future of Windows with 10M + #WindowsInsiders all over the world. They are one of the biggest fan and influencer programs in the tech industry—one that helps shape the future of Microsoft technology every single day. She will guide you on how to create a fan and influencer program for your business and empower these members to be your first ring of defense against low-quality products. Come and hear the secrets of modern product testing and how YOU can emerge as the hero of your own story.

Dona Sarkar
STARWEST 2018 Testing Outside of the Box
Slideshow

The cognitive skills of testing are being threatened by two major forces: the assumption that automation can replace all other forms of testing, and the acceptance of lower quality by consumers. You might be feeling like you’re living on an eroding island, but there is a way to adapt and even thrive using your testing skills. Your project still needs to have someone who will question assumptions, examine design, create experiments, analyze data, and report meaningful metrics. It needs your social skill to connect teams who work in silos, bring customer insights to light, and track risks that no one seems to make time to think about. For twenty-two years, Jon was a tester, test manager, test trainer, and test consultant. Now he’s a senior program manager and uses his testing skills differently. What’s your experience? Jon will ask you a few questions via an anonymous polling app and show the results during the session.

Jon Bach
STARWEST 2018 The Life of a Tester, from Once Upon a Time to Happily Ever After
Slideshow

Most fairy tales start out with a scary premise and move to a happy ending. Lately, we have heard lots of scary stories about the future of testing. As machine learning and artificial intelligence continue to gain prominence, we see even more concerns about the tester’s career. With the help of a famous animation team, Janna and Jennifer will take you through a wild animated journey from what it was like in the early days of software to where we are today. We’ll explore the evolution of the testing profession, as well as what it will become in the future. As this story moves from black and white to full color, you will get a history lesson on where some practices we may take for granted originated, review times when testers and developers were separated and more of adversaries than collaborators, and finish with the present, where quality is everyone’s responsibility.

Jennifer Bonine
Agile Dev West 2018, Better Software West 2018, DevOps West 2018 Removing Impediments and Cultivating a Culture of Feedback
Slideshow

As agilists, we know the importance of open, candid feedback for agile teams to be continuously improving. This talk will share how impediments, such as unconscious biases and a person’s level of self-confidence, can impact the feedback and learning cycle. Participants will learn why there are positive and negative reactions when feedback is given, the difference between a defensive (fixed) and accepting (growth) mindset, how age, self-confidence and gender biases influence an individual’s mindset and other impediments that can impact a team member’s ability to provide candid feedback.

Joanna Vahlsing
Agile Dev West 2018, Better Software West 2018, DevOps West 2018 Impostor Syndrome: The Innovation Killer among Us
Slideshow

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Billie Schuttpelz
Better Software West 2018, Agile Dev West 2018, DevOps West 2018 It's All In Our Heads: Using Neuroscience to Improve Performance
Slideshow

Understanding how our brains take shortcuts to process all the data they take in can help us recognize when its happening, take measures to correct our course, and use that information to build stronger teams. This talk sprang from my curiosity about the intersection of neuroscience and organizational behavior. It is my hope that attendees will leave with the ability to recognize when they and their teams are using processing shortcuts, as well as some techniques for mitigating their impact.

Learning Objectives:
- Identify several ways in which our brains short cut processing in order to deal with the wealth of information they take in and decisions they must make
- Understand how those processing mechanisms manifest in our daily lives, both at home and at work
- Recognize when we are falling prey to our brains' misguided ways and learn to mitigate their impact

 

Faye Thompson
DevOps West 2018, Agile Dev West 2018, Better Software West 2018 Scaling to Infinity: The Quest for Fully Automated, Scalable, Self-Healing Systems
Slideshow

The number of servers in our systems is constantly increasing. With the move to microservices and continuous deployment practices, deployments frequency is higher than ever, yet we are expected to handle increased demand with the same workforce as before. How can we operate clusters at scale with minimum human involvement? The answer lies in adoption of new practices and tools. Join Viktor Farcic as he discussions how container schedulers are becoming a de facto standard for deploying services at scale and continuous deployment is the new norm for complete automation of software delivery. You'll learn about the problems encountered while building systems that operate at scale and understand how to create a cluster that can be scaled to (almost) any size. Viktor will discuss how to enable self-healing and self-adaptation to build a reliable, fault-tolerant system.

Viktor Farcic
Better Software West 2018, Agile Dev West 2018, DevOps West 2018 Leadership from Within an Agile Team
Slideshow

Teams struggle for many reasons, leaving people frustrated, complacent, and content to exist in mediocrity. There is a secret sauce that propels individuals, teams, and entire organizations to be really successful. And that secret is effective leadership! And not just the executives, managers, or those with leader titles get to lead – everyone does. The real benefits of agile emerge when each person embraces their personal leadership. By embracing our inner leader, we are able to engage our team, improve the value and quality of our deliverables, and gain the competitive edge the agile methods intended. In this talk, join Selena Delesie as she explores the value and purpose of the agile practices. Showing you the specific leadership behaviors that will make a big impact on any team, and what these behaviors look like within the agile practices.

Selena Delesie

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