Deliberate Testing

byDaniel Terhorst-North


In the decade since agile has gone mainstream, testing has received more emphasis—and in many organizations an automated test suite is now a prerequisite for delivery. For the first time, testing is a core activity within an integrated dev team rather than a downstream activity to be commoditized or outsourced. However, when you scratch the surface of agile testing, it seems we have lulled ourselves into a false sense of security. In an era of “automate all tests,” testing on agile projects broadly falls into two categories: automated deterministic testing provided by TDD, BDD, ATDD, and friends; and manual exploratory testing, carried out by expert testers.

However rigorously we apply these methods, entire classes of tests aren't being considered, and entire groups of stakeholders are falling through the testing net. Not all automated testing should be deterministic; not all testing should be automated. Dan North helps identify the gaps in your testing approach. By considering testing as a risk management exercise viewed through the eyes of multiple stakeholders, Dan hopes you will share his mild panic about how much testing we aren't doing.