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Quick Intro

Lecture 7 - Test Preps -> Quick Intro -> The Tester's Mental Attitude

From the tester’s perspective, test preps can include:

            1. The generation of new test cases

            2. The modification of existing test cases

            3. The retirement of existing test cases

Sometimes we also need to create and/or modify test automation helpers.

Brain Positioning

Many things that we’ll be talking about will look simple in theory, but don’t allow that pseudo-simplicity to mislead you!

Here is an analogy using chess. It takes 20 minutes and very little brainpower to understand the basic chess rules, but it takes years of practice and hundreds of actual games to become a chess master.

The same is true of test methodology: it will not be hard for you to understand it, but it will take lots of practice before your theoretical understanding will turn into practical value.

For a tester, test preps is the most complex, creative, and interesting activity in software testing. The final result of test preps is a set of test cases that are well geared to find bugs during test case execution.

Brain Positioning

The tester’s job is to find and address bugs. But what if the test case execution result is PASS? Does it automatically mean that the tester failed to do his or her job properly? NO WAY! Imagine a fisherman who uses a net to catch fish. Even if the net is in perfect condition and it was used correctly, sometimes there are simply no fish*!

* In a minute, you’ll find out that we testers must always believe that there are fish… sorry… bugs. 

But the bottom line is that the net must be made well and used properly.

Our net to catch bugs consists of our test cases. We weave/update the net during test preps and use it during test execution.

As you recall, a test case can consist of only expected result, but as a rule it’s a combination of:

            – Idea

            – Scenario

            – Expected result (-s)

The ideas for each of these 3 elements can be taken from many sources – e.g., specs, experience, common sense, etc.

Question: What is different about testers compared to the other participants of the SDLC who can also use specs, experience, common sense, etc., to generate test cases?

Answer: Testers are different because they possess two professional qualities:

            – A special mental attitude towards software

            – Special skills in finding bugs and addressing them

Let’s talk about a tester’s mental attitude first. Next ->

Lecture 7 - Test Preps -> Quick Intro -> The Tester's Mental Attitude