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Is Software Testing Advancing or Stagnating?

The quality movement started in 1924 when Walter Shewhart gave his boss at Bell Labs a memo suggesting the use of statistics to improve quality in telephones. Later came Juran and Deming, and the movement was well on its way. Not surprisingly, the software industry eventually took up the challenge of systematically improving quality. Let's look at how that began.

Steve Whitchurch
Use Case Derived Test Cases

Use Cases are used to specify the required functionality of an Object-Oriented system. Test cases that are derived from use cases take advantage of the existing specification to ensure good functional test coverage of the system.

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Test Automation for Multi-Platform Client-Server Software

This paper is based on our testing experience of two major releases (version 6 and version 7) of the multi-platform client/server software, SAS/SHARE product which is the database management system for SAS users. It describes our test automation strategy for version 6 and identifies the achievements and weaknesses of our approach and explains how we improve our test process.

The test process improvement effort for version 7 includes reduction of test automation level, use of macros that facilitate reproduction of defects in an interactive manner and extensive use of mega tests for early detection of defects as well as cross host and cross version tests.

Heesun Park
Automated Test Generation

The challenge for testers: reduce the testing interval without reducing quality. One answer: find a new way to approach test design and test generation. This paper will discuss an ongoing Lucent Technologies experiment in automated test generation from a behavioral model of the software product under test. Results indicate that our new approach can increase the effectiveness of our testing while reducing the cost of test design and generation.

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Mutation Testing: A New Approach to Automatic Error-Detection

Mutation Testing is a powerful method for finding errors in software programs. This paper will describe the process of mutation testing and how a new approach to this technology benefits the software industry.

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When Should a Test Be Automated?

The question is how to make a rational decision about which tests to automate. When I take a job as a contract tester, I typically design a series of tests for some product feature. For each of them, I need to decide whether that particular test should be automated. This paper describes how I think about the tradeoffs.

Brian Marick
Teamwork Does Work: Testing and Quality in Large Development Projects

In 1993, we at USA Group chartered a project to replace its 15-year old student loan guarantee system. The new system was named EAGLE II and recently entered production. USA Group is driven by its software systems. As a consequence, software development is strategic to the company's success. We've had significant experience in creating and maintaining large systems. However, our experience in creating those previous systems left us looking for a better way.

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T-shirts Are Not Enough

Watching the recent Olympic teams in their matching uniforms reinforced the value of connecting with your team. What other gear might your team need? I'm not sure where we got the idea that T-shirts were enough. Are we too arrogant to admit that sometimes a bulletproof vest would be handy?

Eileen Strider
Who Needs Management?!

I have heard testers lament about being managed by non-technical people who cannot tell the difference between a PC and a microwave oven (they both have windows, don't they?)! Managers believe in management, and we technical people believe in subtler, sophisticated, deep technology. The concept is simple. Then I was subjected to a harsh reality!

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How to Plan the Perfect 'T' Party

Software professionals have long engaged in debate over software development processes. Much has been written about how to improve those processes-resulting in better-quality, faster-to-market products. Often neglected are the people who implement the processes. Developers and testers frequently seem to have adversarial relationships, although they share the same goal: high-quality software. No matter how good they are, the processes are unlikely to succeed if the participants fail to get along.

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