Posted by Ben Simo
I find it at work. I find it in online forums. I find it in books. I find it in papers. I find it in blogs. I find it at conferences.
I hear it from experts. I hear it from freshers. I hear it from friends. I hear it from managers. I sometimes even hear it come out of my own mouth.
It influences testers. It influences developers. It influences managers that influence testers and developers. It impacts customers.
It wastes time. It wastes money. It frustrates developers. It confuses executives. It demeans testers. It decreases quality in the name of improvement.
It permeates the practice of developing and testing software.
What is this ubiquitous it?
It is testing folklore.
It ain’t so much the things we don’t know that gets us in trouble. It’s the things we know that ain’t so.
- Artemus Ward
Here are some examples I pulled off the top of my head:
- There are best practices
- Tool vendors know those best practices
- The right tools make good testing
- Testers are the enemies of developers
- Automated unit testing is the only testing we need
- Written requirements are needed for testing
- It is possible to document unambiguous requirements
- Repeatability is maturity
- Tests can be completely designed and scripted before execution
- Testing is simple if guided by the right process
- Quality can be tested into a product
- Good manual testing can be replaced by automation
- Automation is only good for regression testing
- Test case counts are a good measure of test status
- All web pages should load in under 6 seconds
- Testers need to have development skills
- Good testing can be pre-scripted to be executed by anyone that can follow directions
- Boundaries are easy to identify
- Most bugs occur at boundaries
- Testing is easily outsourced to unintelligent people
- Testing is easily outsourced to tools
- Increased testing effort improves quality
It is time to unlearn those things we know that ain't so. Challenge the folklore. Ask questions.
- Who says so?
- How do they know?
- What are they missing?
- Does it apply to my context?
- Does it make sense?
Maybe its time to call Mythbusters.