Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Evidence Before the Court...

So after several months of pondering if I was ready to take the plunge, I decided it was time. I took the jump and signed up for Bug Advocacy, the 2nd class in the mix for the Association for Software Testing’s Black Box Software Testing Series. I’ll confess that I’ve held back for a while on this for a variety of reasons.

The first was the fact that I had gotten involved in teaching the BBST Foundations series of classes, having taken the class as a participant in May and then assisting in teaching the class three times after that (and hopefully with more opportunities to teach going forward). The second reason is that, after seeing the rate of completion of Foundations vs. the rate of completion for Bug Advocacy, I was a little concerned that I’d wash out of it or not be able to dedicate the time necessary (especially after it became clear I was going to be changing jobs!).

However, I decided that neither of those were really good excuses, and that, if I was going to fail, let’s just find out. Much easier to de-fang the dragon by just taking it head on, and if I can’t de-fang it, well, let’s find out!

So having now been in the class for three days, my impressions are that it’s not a slouch class. There’s some meaty concepts here. Even after 17 years of active participation in testing, it’s interesting to note that there is still plenty of ambiguity regarding what a bug is and the best way to deal with it. The exercises and readings… are no joke. When I said that Foundations was the kind of meat that was missing in a number of the training options associated with testing, I can now honestly say that I’m now even more of a fan of the model that AST is using (and note, I didn’t get any kick-back for this, I paid $200 to participate and so far, I’m really glad that I have :) ).

The quizzes are still challenging, thought provoking and a bit frustrating, and the exercises interesting and challenging. The participants are a great bunch, many of whom I was either in class with as a participant or as one of their instructors (hope I wasn’t too hard on any of them, otherwise it might be “pay back time” ).

So a half-week into the first week of a new course, I’m cautiously optimistic. Either way, I’m having fun thinking about these things and I’ll be making regular posts that will talk about the class itself without giving away any “secrets” ;).
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