Blogging in Shorts – WTF is a tester?!?

This is the first in what I hope to be an ongoing series called “Blogging in Shorts”.
These will be short blog posts that are things that are going around in my head about testing.

They are likely to be either rants or raw thought, so they may not be completely thought out, but I want to get them down on (virtual) paper and maybe then I, or others from the community can build upon them.

Anyway heres the first:

Im always reading articles and blogs that tell me what a tester is. The problem is they never seem to agree!

The truth is that they are all correct, in their own way. But it sure does make for a lot of confusion within our industry. whats adds to this confusion is almost all of these blog posters and article writers make there definition seem so absolute; There can be only one…and its my definition.

If we could all as test communicators/advocates stop trying to convince the rest of the IT industry, and ourselves that a tester is <your definition> and instead start to be more open and honest with a tester can be <your definition> but there are other just as valid definitions in other contexts  message then I think that we as an industry might start to be able to rid the IT industry of some of its myths and monsters that have plagued us for as long as I can remember.

2 thoughts on “Blogging in Shorts – WTF is a tester?!?

  1. Interesting thoughts Darren. Funnily enough, people from other software streams (developers, BA et al.) don’t seem to have this existential crisis. Ask a developer what he/she does, you get a definite answer. I think testers are trying too hard to convince all others that testing is not what they think it is. Any good developer/PM/BA etc. instinctively understands the role and importance of testing in a project and I don’t think they really care about semantics of testing definitions.

  2. Hay Finny, hope you are well!

    Thanks for the comment. I’m not sure I am as confident as you appear to be that other roles within the software development industry are so well defined. I think they would have their own, if not exact, at least similar semantic/definitions issues. However I do agree that if you asked let say 100 developers the what/why/how you might get more closely (but not exact) aligned answers.

    Your also right that ime those outside of testing don’t care about “some” of the semantical debates of testing definitions Im not sure thats a positive thing necessarily. A lot of that, I think is down to either an general or agenda based ignorance as well as . in a lot of ways they are in a view that this testing thing is all figured out and just needs to be boilerplated and rolled out.

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