Saturday, May 28, 2016

Rainy Spring Season

I have to apologize. This is the second cartoon in sequence without a direct relationship to my daily work as QA manager. Actually, there is a relationship, but it is not so obvious. I promise, the next cartoon will be again more focusing to IT again.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Bugs at the bar

I must admit, the cartoon is still in kind of a draft mode, since you still see the outline of the pencil.., I will correct that later.

Friday, January 1, 2016

After Lunch Atop a Skyscraper

The original picture showing construction workers sitting at lunch at the RCA building was created in September 29, 1932. Many parodies exist and here is yet another one, 84 years later, although I must add that this photo here was shot by myself from the Empire State Building in 1997. You can see its shadow. The birds were drawn at Sylvester 2015/2016 and the only "stolen" part here is the structural steel work and the cable on the right.
And what does this have to do with TESTING? Nothing, but these 11 testers mark my QA team spread all over the world, and although they are sitting high above ground, they've got wings and I hope they use them to overcome all following challenges and ups and downs we may face in this new year 2016.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Performance Testing applied

A view years back a client's back office system failed and queued all of their web service requests to our system. When they had fixed the issue, their queue was about to get emptied. Too many submissions were executed all at the same time. As a result OUR system went down.When we fixed it on our side, our management excused about the downtime and made a proposal to our client to announce next time when they start with a massive load again. Since it wasn't really a massive load, our client didn't find that statement very funny and responded similar like the penguin in the cartoon.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Early Hotfixes

Where I work, hotfixes were things we dealt long before we started developing software. Their appearance was a little bit different, but they solved similar issues.

A beautiful exemplar of "ugly workarounds"  from the Sixties was presented to me just yesterday. I took a shot with my camera and I just couldn't resist posting it here...

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Power Breakdown in Zurich

It can really be a hard day if you sit there and wait, and not even the coffee-maker is pluged to the emergency backup generator.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

How developers see their code

The idea of this cartoon was born after a conversation with a developer who didn't intend to clarify whether a certain piece of code was working as expected.
 The developer stated: "by looking at the code, I know that it works".
Actually, he wasn't at fault, but it was kind of amusing for me to see how different developers think compared to software testers.

I don't believe in code-snippets that I see on a piece of paper or checked-into some source code management system. I want to see this thing run, fly and rock before I make a statement that I like what I have seen. Besides, it also reminded me to another developer statement I've accidentally witnessed many many years ago and I will never forget that phrase which was: "I haven't tested it, but the implementation looks great".

To be honest, I can't tell here whether the developer said that to himself to blow his own horn or whether he was talking to another developer to compliment on his work.

However, after all these years being involved in many testing projects and having developed software myself long time ago, I have always marveled developers' ability of innocent look at their code like they constructed a beauty, only to learn a little later from a critical thinker that either half of it is missing or not working as intended. When I was developing software my own, I was always uncertain whether I did the right thing and I asked the customer several times, if this is really how this thing should work. But that was 20 years ago and we didn't have any testers at that time who served as a protective barrier between development team and customer. The customer was coming to us - developers - every six weeks to tell us where we were wrong. We faced these customers directly. Maybe that made a difference.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Cross delivery

After the introduction of shorter release cycles, I noted a higher rate of bugs and features that had to be cross-delivered. Often this cross-delivery caused additional problems either because it happened on the wrong stream or it went forgotten. As a result old known bugs re-occurred in different streams.

I worked several hours on this cartoon and I prepared not less than 10 different drafts which I all abandoned because I was not happy with the characters I chose to represent the code pieces. l I finally decided to take that little triangle from Java. I kept a few of the drafts and decided to upload the last two of them so you can see how things develop.







Thursday, July 2, 2015

Lineup of the ugly bugs

This is one of these wonderful moments where you get flooded by some nice creatures that can ruin your day or even the week.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Finding the right moment for your tests

There are these great moments in a testers's life when you realize that some of those great testing ideas tests should have been applied a little earlier.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Friday, February 6, 2015

Foreign Particles in the Code

There was this ugly bug which was sitting quite comfortable on this box until this chain of code went live and the release manager asked once more "why haven't you found this bug"?

Why is it always the testers who "fail" when a bug is going live and why is none ever asking the developers why they introduce bugs without asking the testers upfront for permission to ship  bugs?



Tuesday, January 20, 2015

High IQ cat

All of us had to go through this weird online game which - we believe - should demonstrate how we work, maybe gather our IQ or how we deal with pressure. Actually none knows.... We never got the results, no feedback not even to bugs that we reported during the game...but what was the most funny moment  - the root cause for this cartoon - was someone not playing but simply letting the game play by itself. No human interaction, simply doing nothing, no keyboard clicking or whatsoever...just standby and this person got the same amount of points like others who were hacking into the keyboard like crazy....What does it tell us? That game was either crap and with it of course all the results that were collected from the employees or there is something we just didn't know. We will never know.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Empire State Building built with MINECRAFT

Sorry no cartoon today but something else impressive. The Empire State Buidling built by my son, block by block in MINECRAFT.

Watch video here:
Empire State Building built with MINECRAFT


Sunday, August 31, 2014

Selfie Bugs

These bugs were inspired by Geri Müller

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Compatibility Challenges

At the time I made this cartoon and when it was  published first in "Die neue Schulpraxis (02/2014), I didn't have any concrete scenarios in mind, but it happened just by accident that this cartoon now fits perfectly to an issue I faced recently where we deployed an updated version of the back-end software which was incompatible to very old client applications that communicate to our back-end system.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Friday, February 7, 2014

Arctic Tennis

First cartoon this year..

BTW, I was asked whether it was by purpose that I took a FEMALE penguin sitting on this tennis ball. Not really. The truth is, first I used a male penguin but then I suddenly questioned whether male penguins do hatch eggs. I wasn't quite sure but I still had in my mind that male and female are taking turns between each other. At that time it was already too late to verify (01:00 am) and I was too tired to do proper investigation. In the meantime I verified it. Both penguins are breeding the eggs. While one is hunting for food, the other takes over the breeding job.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thursday, October 31, 2013

New App in town

This app introduced a completely new driving experience...

BTW, please excuse the grey shade in the last two cartoons. This is an ugly boring bug within Google's Blogger tool which introduces a grey background into all uploaded pictures even though whey are supposed to be clearly white.
There are some comments from other bloggers who suffer of the same problem. 

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Off the Scent

I was asked by The Testing Planet whether I could provide a cartoon about leadership. Until then I focused primarily on drawing cartoons about practical testing and less on management issues. I thought that was covered already well enough by Dilbert. But since I met some interesting managers, too, it shouldn't be too difficult to put some scenarios on paper, like this one here, where I illustrated a "visionary" guy.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Risk Management

Risk is a combination of both, the probability of a bug to happen in production and the art of understanding the impact for the customer. As is with lots of such decisions, people might have different views on the impact depending on how well they understand the customers' needs.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

End of the World

This is the last cartoon for this year and it's really time to sit back for a moment, relax from "hard" work and my sporting injuries. Merry X-Mas and a happy new year to all of you  who are following me either through this blog or via my email distribution list. See/draw you again, next year.

Best wishes Torsten

Friday, November 9, 2012

Performance Testing

This is a reworked cartoon. Originally I drew the cartoon without any keyboards at his hands/tentacles and it was actually also published like this in "The Testing Planet". But now the joke is a little bit more clear, I guess. Enjoy.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Everyday life at the Southern Hemisphere

People often ask me, how long it takes me to draw a cartoon. I cannot really provide a right answer here as it heavily depends. For this cartoon it took me only about 1 hour. This is very fast and also the number of drafts (only 2) is surprisingly low.  Usually, even though I am not a perfectionist, it takes much longer, probably 2 hours, but I've also worked on cartoons which took me 3 hours. I have stopped coloring my cartoons because this is an extra challenge at which I don't really excel. I mean, I have to spend a lot of time and the outcome is chilling. I think I do much better on some kind of grey scale. 
My daughter askmed me whether I drew the Orca straight out of my head. Of course, NOT. I cannot draw an orca just like this out of my head. I googled the web to understand the most important characteristics, then did two drafts and this is what came out. If I didn't do that, I'd definitly missed the white spots and put the eye at the wrong place. Below you see the "final" before I scan it into the computer and the very first draft.

Final version before scanning into computer
 
 
 Very first draft

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Captcha #1

CAPTCHAs are used to prevent automated software from performing actions which degrade the quality of service of a given system and/or to protect the service from attackers trying to hack login credentials using brute-force attacks.

Until now, I never had to test CAPTCHAs but thinking about it, testing CAPTCHAs automatically is impossible if testability isn't considered at all. Testability here could mean for the roboter to offer a backdoor which contains the correct clear-text. Of course such information should only be available to the script and de-activated when deployed live. Sometimes, even I struggle to identify the clear-text of the CAPTCHA, and I am NOT a roboter...

Thursday, August 30, 2012

The Thompson Test

Two weeks ago, during a soccer match I experienced a sudden short pain at my left leg, near the achilles tendon. When at hospital, a doctor analyzed my leg, and her first assumption was an Achilles tendon rupture.  But since my pain was at an untypical place, she called another doctor for a second set of eyes, I was told to turnaround, then the doctors hold my left leg, executed an elegant grab handle first on my right, then on my left leg and said “it is clearly an Achilles tendon rupture”.

I was impressed, because it took the doctor only seconds to make a clear statement without even asking me questions about where I feel any pain. Later, the magnetic resonance imaging procedure (MRI) confirmed the doctors' diagnosis. When I later googled the web, I learnt, the doctor executed the so called "Thompson Test".

Now, let's try to bring this experience into context with Software Testing. Of course, otherwise I wouldn’t have mentioned it in my blog. In contrary to the doctors, we testers usually look for bugs and not necessarily how to solve an existing problem. This is more typically the job of a software developer, although we testers also try to help as much as possible in finding some indication for the root cause of the problem (btw, works only if managers don't measure a tester's throughput by counting the number of bugs found...).

We use test techniques that are effective in one area and probably less effective in another. One such technique I use often for documenting software bugs, is the classification according to Kepner-Tregoe. By answering a set of simple questions you may either find the solution to the problem on your own (actually the main goal of this technique) or, if not, you provide at least some valuable set of information to the developer. This makes it much easier for him to localize the issue and become more efficient in solving it. If you want to learn more about Kepner-Tragoe, go ahead, GIYBF.

Additional we use logging tools (actually we have several ones), where we can grab the exact exception message; something that is typically NOT shown to a user because it might frighten him, but it is important for the testers and supporters to have access to, so the developer does not need to spend too much time investigating and trying to reproduce the issue.

TOJZ...still suffering the aftermath of my sporting injury for quite a while...