Software development can never deliver the desired results if the product isn’t tested properly. Software testing have always been as important as development itself, but have been neglected by many organizations for years. There are many reasons why software testing was neglected, and one of them attributes to the many misconceptions surrounding the concept.

One common issue is when even software testers believe certain misconceptions that consequently impact the quality of testing as well as the time spent on testing. That said, here are the top 3 common myths associated with software testing that one should be aware of.
 

#1. Testing raises costs

 
This is probably the most common misunderstanding about software testing, that even executives from different domains tend to believe. The misconception is that testing is a cost center. As like every business, their primary goal would be to reduce costs as much as possible.

On the contrary, software QA and testing can actually deliver great financial benefits both directly and indirectly provided they are done right. IBM’s Systems Sciences Institute’s research shed light on the fact that a software development company would have to at least 4 times more when addressing a software bug post the product’s release than they would had they identified the same bug during the development stage itself.

We should also consider the costs that’d be incurred due to the potential damage a defective software can cause. The failure may in turn tarnish the reputation of software testing companies as well. Software testing, when done right with the right set of quality testing tools can save the company from financial setbacks.
 

#2. Legacy tools should be enough

 
Even when Agile methodology is being widely adopted by companies, the practice of using legacy tools for testing still seems to exist. A lot of businesses left the waterfall methodology behind, but not all of them replaced it with Agile. This means, many such companies are still neglecting the potential of agile software testing tools.

The legacy tools they resort to using now will possibly not be able to integrate with the Agile workflows. This can make things more complicated, leading to inefficient testing. Using the tools without adopting Agile would only result in low-quality testing in the present age. It’ll be hard for them to meet modern quality standards.

The optimal approach to testing today is to develop an Agile ecosystem, and use Agile development and testing tools. The team will then be able to focus more on the results, and deliver high-quality software in the end.
 

#3. Testing is not that difficult

 
Software testers in general are not too fond of this particular misconception. The dominance of Agile led many enterprises to embrace the notion that everyone is a tester. This further wrongly suggested that the job of a tester has become less critical, and is seen more as a small part of a collective effort.

The fact of the matter is that in an Agile ecosystem, testers are just as important as developers. Though developers also get to contribute to testing, the heavy-lifting is still done by testers. Software testing today demands testers to make value judgments and critical decisions. They get to see the bigger picture from the beginning itself, and are expected to guide the Agile team towards the objective.
 

Conclusion

 
New technologies keep showing up out of the blue these days. Some bring new software testing tools and strategies along with them. This means testers will have to augment their skillsets to prepare for even more advanced testing, while organizations build teams and the ecosystem to facilitate effective development and testing. Testers will nevertheless play a bigger role than ever before in software development, with more responsibilities.

Written by: Suraj Jayaram

APIs have always been a vital part when it comes to software development and how the software serves its purpose. Web-based applications are too common now, and are heavily relied on by organizations and individuals alike. This makes proper API testing more crucial than ever.

In this post, we will be sharing 6 great API testing tools that would come in handy for software testing efforts this year.
 

Soap UI

 
Soap UI is a popular open source testing tool used primarily for web services testing and API testing. Its functionality is useful for invoking, development, simulation, web service checks, load testing, functional testing etc. to name a few.
 

Frisby.js

 
An open source JavaScript library, Frisby is built on NodeJS and Jasmine (a Behavior-driven development style test runner). The community considers it a great REST API testing framework facilitating simpler and faster testing of API endpoints.

Frisby.js 2.0 is coming out soon with further improvements making the underlying Jasmine structure more extensible and exposed. The Jasmine node test runner makes it possible to run Frisby tests in a continuous integration ecosystem.
 

Karate DSL

 
Karate DSL is an open source command-line testing framework that uses BDD to define API tests. The framework is more familiar to people who use Cucumber JVM for BDD tests, as it’s built on Cucumber JVM. Like Frisby, Karate DSL also supports seamless integration and continuous delivery pipelines.

It also supports testing live environments, in addition to providing comprehensive support for common HTTP calls that use HTTPS, HTTP proxies, SOAP/XML etc.
 

Postman

 
Unlike its other counterparts mentioned above, Postman is a hosted GUI API Testing client used for exploratory testing primarily. It features documentation, sharing, and monitoring support in addition. Its broad set of features make it a very useful API testing tool.

Another advantage is that Postman runs on local machine, giving control of data. However, not all software testing companies prefer using Postman, and it’s not because of a lack of features. Many companies would have security restrictions due to which they won’t be able to use a fully hosted option. Like most other tools in this list, Postman also supports testing in a continuous integration pipeline.
 

Assertible

 
Assertible is more popular and preferred compared to Postman as it focusses more on automation and reliability. The tool also features HTTP response validation with turnkey assertions.

Its greatest advantage is the fact that it allows automation of API tests through every step of a continuous integration/delivery pipeline, making things much easier for smaller groups of testers.  It can integrate with tools like GitHub, Slack, and Zapier, and supports running API tests post deployment.
 

Apigee API Studio

 
Testers can use the API Studio from Apigee to build APIs. The Studio also facilitates easier and effective API testing thanks to its many features designed specifically to simplify testing. One of the major use cases is for API Response Simulation with mock HTTP responses. However, it is still in its beta but the community expects many updates this year which will add more features to the already useful tool.
 

Conclusion

 
There are a great number of useful tools for thorough API testing, but the ones listed above are quite unique. Most of them are still rising among the ranks but handy nonetheless. This list should be helpful for testers who would like to explore tools that can make their work easy. It’s a new year, and introducing yourself to new testing tools might be the change you are looking for. Try them out.

Written by: Suraj Jayaram

Without adequate QA & testing, no software product can actually serve its purpose or do what it was designed to do effectively. Experienced developers will always have their QA & testing teams caught up on the latest trends in the dynamically evolving testing sector, particularly at present times when new technologies are coming into the frame.

To keep up with competition in an evolving industry, analyzing and even foreseeing the trends could make all the difference. When it comes to mobile app and software testing, knowledge on the trends beforehand could get you great leverage when the time comes.

That said, here are a few of the most noteworthy emerging trends that will make big waves in 2018’s technology arena.
 

The progress of IoT

 
The Internet of Things is a relatively new technology, but its growth in a short span of time is nothing but astonishing. Its potential is amazing as well. The rapid growth of such a revolutionary technology forecasts big changes in 2018. This means testers have their work cut out for them.

They will have to deal with software and applications that connect devices with each other and with the internet. This brings concern as much as excitement for QA and testing professionals primarily because it’s hard to determine and establish security policies, and define testing tools, for a new technology like IoT. Nevertheless, IoT products will have to be tested for their functionality, effectiveness, and reliability. And there’s still time to prepare.
 

The much anticipated merging of Agile & DevOps

 
The general idea behind DevOps is to facilitate seamless collaboration between various departments in an IT company. Agile teams today have already started including test automation professionals. The present shift in software and mobile app development trends call for more progressive and iterative testing operations, and this is what a DevOps ecosystem essentially demands as well though continuous testing is more commonly used.

Today’s DevOps environment can benefit from test automation on every level. Testers will have more responsibilities – from verification of requirements and configuring integration toolsets to creating DevOps-compatible automation frameworks.

From what the experts are predicting, we can expect the merging of QA testers and developers very soon. This would subsequently result in faster delivery and QA, and in turn a higher ROI.
 

Open source tools will dominate

 
Technically, open source tools already have great authority in the testing industry today. This year, we witnessed a surge in the adoption of open source tools and services by companies for executing test automation and management. This could be a foreshadowing of further expansion of open source next year.

We might likely get introduced to advanced open source testing tools with reliable community support. To conclude, 2018 could very well be the year when open source finally dominates the testing sector across the globe. It’d be wise to prepare for it beforehand.
 

Performance engineering

 
This relates to mobile app development, and is one of the most anticipated trends in the digital realm. The success of a mobile app also depends on the app’s user experience. With the best UX starting to become the norm, it’s no surprise that Software/System Performance Engineering (SPE) has started replacing conventional performance testing.

This new systematic approach will be focusing on the architecture, design and implementation. This subsequently cuts the development costs while ensuring that the product meets performance requirements before its release.
 

Conclusion

 
The software development and testing industries are in for some major changes next year. Software has now more priority across the world, and the number of mobile devices keep increasing tremendously. These shifts in culture brought forth many challenges to both testers and developers to deliver tested applications that provide great user experience and functionality.

The trends mentioned above is a wake-up call for developers and testers to add to their knowledge and enhance their skill sets.

Written by: Suraj Jayaram

Agile testing, despite all its benefits, still is quite challenging for testers. The software testing Dubai industry have only recently adopted agile testing methodologies, and their efforts for each project begin with devising strategies to overcome challenges should any arise.

An experienced software development company in Dubai wouldn’t try to tackle these challenges head on, especially if they follow agile practices. An agile ecosystem enhances the role of QA in projects but requires them to have a solid understanding of agile development methodologies and the challenges lying dormant in it.
 

Agile Testing Challenges

 
The core functionality of agile development is to deliver working software frequently, as iterations. Each iteration will have added features and enhancements compared to the preceding ones. These enhancements should be of value to the client. And this is where challenges begin for developers and the QA team.
 

  1. Last minute changes or change in requirements

 

Changing requirements mid-sprint is quite common in an agile environment. As a matter of fact, agile is designed to handle such scenarios without much risks. However, this can still become problematic for developers and testers who have already started working on the enhancements for the next iteration. They would sometimes have to scrap the half-baked iteration completely, affecting the scope of the project or making it harder to meet deadlines.

Solution

In such a scenario, what the testers can do is to document every little detail about the tests that have been run, and which parts of the application haven’t been tested. This would help the project team and the manager make an informed decision on the features that can be added while considering the risks.

 

  1. When the client/product owner is unable to define a feature he/she wants

 

Quite often, the client or the product owner might get an idea to add a specific feature to the product during development. Not all of them might be able to detail a good set of acceptance criteria so the developers can understand the feature and the context it applies to. Still, they may provide a vague description to the developers, subsequently asking them to build a prototype to get more ideas about the feature and its behavior in the product.

This makes it particularly challenging for the testers as they won’t have an understanding of the feature. It’ll be difficult for them to construct test cases.

Solution

The testing lead would be having the experience to start testing without detailed requirements by considering advanced scenarios so as to test the basic concept. These high level test scenarios can still maintain the context even if there are changes in the details. Over time, they can communicate with the client after submitting test results. Based on the results, it would be easier to get an overview of how the client want the feature to behave.

 

  1. Giving early feedback to developers

 

Testing is more of an activity than a phase in an agile environment i.e. testers will have to begin either from the beginning of the development or a bit earlier before the development starts. The testers should make sure that any backlogs are elaborated during the grooming sessions. This requires proper collaboration with the client to gain insights so as to help develop the appropriate acceptance criteria.

This also means testers should provide early feedback to developers. It can be challenging due to the fact that testers are required to ensure two things.

  • The new feature works as specified in the acceptance criteria
  • The new code hasn’t affected existing functionalities in any way

Solution

Ensure that each story discussed during the grooming sessions has adequate acceptance criteria. The whole QA team has to understand the context of a story (required addition of features and enhancements) before the development itself begins.

It’s a wise approach to create tests, both manual and automated, beforehand so that when the feature is added, testing can begin right away. Developers can be asked to make the development transparent by continuous deployment to testing environments so that testers won’t have to wait their turn. This also gives testers an insight on what the team is trying to achieve.

 

  1. Ensuring functionality across multiple browsers and devices

 

This mostly pertains to website testing. Websites today generally tend to have a front-end and back-end. The front-end would mostly be based on CSS and JavaScript and both could behave differently depending on the browser or the device.

One of the biggest challenges testers will have to overcome is when they are required to ensure that the website being developed functions as per expectations across all major web browsers and mobile devices.

Solution

Manually doing this would take significant effort and time. This is where automation comes to play. Automated tests can be run in parallel on multiple servers using tools like Selenium Grid. Combining it with an agile-friendly container service like Docker would make things far easier for testers.

 

Conclusion

 
Though Agile considerably reduces risks and challenges, it’s mostly never easy for testers as their role in the ecosystem is as important as a developer’s. But there are workarounds to almost all of these challenges. However, it requires strategic planning and dedicated efforts. If the testers lack the technical skills, things can get even more difficult. In such cases, outsourcing to a reliable IT solutions company would be a better idea.

Written by: Kiran

In the world of online business, mobile applications are just as important as websites. Apps are more critical considering the fact that people now use mobile devices rather than desktops to make online purchases. This is why businesses focus on delivering a seamless experience to users through applications, and keep them engaged to retain them. So quality assurance of these applications and any enterprise software is as important as software development itself.

At present, we are witnessing a rising demand for test automation so as to ensure the performance and functionalities of software as well as applications.

TEST magazine recently partnered with SoftwareTestingNews to carry out a survey on automation testing.

When asked what the respondents would like to achieve in the next 5 years, about 73% of the respondents said they would like to see 50:50 to 25:75 manual:automation testing. 14% of the respondents prefer not to have manual testing.

Automation testing tools not only make testing easier but also make it efficient. Though enterprises have a wide range of options for automation tools to choose from, they generally tend to choose only a select few that fit their business goals, testing goals, and budget.

Depending on these factors, the choice may either be a proprietary (licensed) tool or an open source tool. Nevertheless, these tools can make a considerable difference in the way software testing works.

Here is a list of a few of the top automation testing tools a tester should know about.
 

Eggplant

 
This test automation tool is the best choice for many owing to its various features that enable developers to create, plan, schedule and execute tests to assess the performance and functionality aspects of the application across various devices and platforms. Compatibility with Linux, macOS X, and Windows is an added benefit. The tool can also integrate with app lifecycle management software including but not limited to Jenkins and IBM Rational Quality Manager.
 

Ranorex

 
Ranorex is popular among testers as it offers cost-effective and innovative test automation software to businesses across the globe. Ranorex license enables testers to test not just mobile apps but also desktop and web apps as well. The tool can be adapted across popular programming languages, and is quite easy to implement.

In addition to testing the functionality of the app with both the tester’s and developer’s inputs, Ranorex also boosts distributed testing. It supports a wide range of popular technologies including .NET, Java, iOS/Android/Windows apps etc.

Key benefits:

  • Enables Selenium WebDriver integration in Ranorex Studio
  • Access Selenium tools
  • JUnit compatible reports
  • Plug-in free web testing

 

Selenium

 
A widely endorsed tool by the testing community, Selenium is an open source test automation tool that’s primarily used for web and mobile testing. No upfront costs and free technical support from a big community makes Selenium a much preferred option for businesses offering IT services.

The tool with its own script allows testers to run tests under many browsers simultaneously. It can be used with multiple languages including C#, JavaScript, PHP, Python etc. and also integrates seamlessly with tools like SauceLabs, QMetry etc.
 

Tosco

 
A test automation tool from Tricentis, Tosco is slowly rising in popularity. Tosco reduces testing time and effort for manual testing, bringing down the cost considerably. In addition, it doesn’t require much maintenance either and can fit in well in an agile environment.

Key benefits:

  • Testers can reuse test assets
  • Test cases are redundancy-free
  • Drag and drop execution of test cases
  • Disseminates automated tests across the cloud or virtual machines

 

Conclusion

 
Test automation can only be effective if it’s leveraged properly. And to leverage it properly, it’s vital to plan ahead while keeping the business goals in mind before implementing it. These tools can serve their purpose only if test automation is implemented properly. See the connection? Plan. Implement. Leverage.

Written by: Suraj Jayaram
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