Monday, November 20, 2006

What Best Practices really are. -- CIO Article

Of all the places I expected to find an article supporting the fact that Best Practices is nothing more than a square on someone's buzz-word bingo card, CIO wasn't it. The highlights are these...
Using celebs for endorsements has become such best practice that everyone does it. So what is best practice about it? Nothing. The phrase is simply a demonstration of how cliched business language dresses up the concept of copying something someone else has done. And when lots of companies copy the copier, it becomes dull, intellectually stagnant and offers no competitive advantage. It's just a me-too strategy executed by the cynical, the lazy, or the lazy cynics.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Happy About Global Software Test Automation

I just posted this review for Hung Nguyen's new book on Amazon. All you testers and test managers out there, slip this book under your boss's door when they aren't looking and watch how quickly the company starts embracing and respecting software testing!


Happy About Global Software Test Automation: A Discussion of Software Testing for Executives is an absolute must read for any executive in a company that develops, customizes or implements software.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Modeling Application Usage Visually, Google Tech Talk

Some folks have said that I should get this on my blog, so here it is. If you like it, rate it... if you don't... umm... well... let your conscious be your guide. ;)

Modeling Application Usage Visually

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Description: Google TechTalks April 24, 2006 Scott Barber is the CTO of PerfTestPlus, Inc. and Co-Founder of the Workshop on Performance and Reliability (WOPR). Scott's particular specialties are testing and analyzing performance for complex systems, developing customized testing methodologies, group facilitation and authoring instructional materials.

Astract Modeling application usage is more than just parsing log files and calculating page frequencies. Whether we are analyzing navigation path effectiveness, planning for scenario testing, documenting performance test workload models or mapping services or objects to user activity having a single, intuitive picture to reference makes the job easier. In this session, we'll explore a highly adaptable method for visualizing application usage and how to use this model to improve cross-functional team communication without requiring team members to invest time learning some new fad of a modeling language that they'll probably never use again. This method references UCML™ which has been described as "what collaboration diagrams should have been."

Wednesday, November 8, 2006

4-Second Rule?

 It looks like Juniper Research has finally done away with the 8-second rule in favor of a 4-second rule. I want to point something out right up front... This new "rule" is based on a survey that asks the question...
Question: Typically, how long are you willing to wait for a single Web page to load before leaving the Web site? (Select one.)
A. More than 6 seconds.
B. 5-6 seconds.
C. 3-4 seconds.
D. 1-2 seconds.
E. Less than 1 second.
Sorry Juniper - I promise that if we sat down with your respondents and asked them to identify how many seconds various pages took to load that MOST of them would not get it right and that MOST of the wrong ones *think* a page takes longer to load than it actually does. Reviewing the report for yourself here:
Scott Barber
Chief Technologist, PerfTestPlus, Inc.

Co-Author, Performance Testing Guidance for Web Applications
Author, Web Load Testing for Dummies
Contributing Author, Beautiful Testing, and How To Reduce the Cost of Testing

"If you can see it in your mind...
     you will find it in your life."

Wednesday, November 1, 2006

How to Ask (and Not Ask) for Free Consulting

James Bach has posted a great blog about how to and how not to ask industry leaders for assistance.

This rang true with me and my experiences, but some folks seemed to find his perspective to be arrogant or rude. Below I've copied a representative quote and my response.

But the way he handled it, and because I know that James Bach is a very experienced person in answering forum like questions, it looks as if Bach planed it all and maneuvered the poor guy to this corner, maybe to show him how he should behave. The way Bach handled it is IMHO was one of the worse that I have seen. Instead of getting healthy results (the guy understands his mistake, apologizes and learns from it) it looks like Bach did what ever he could to insult the guy in order to get that kind of reaction. I can learn a lot from James Bach but I am not going to take this approach as a good example to learn from. As Linda said, it doe’s him no credit. 

I have to disagree. I admit that I consider Jim to be a close personal friend. I further admit that my first impression of James Bach was that he was a pompous ass. It was only after meeting him that I came to absolutely adore conversing with him for all the reasons that can be taken as "pompous ass" to anyone who approaches him with defensiveness and self-righteousness.