Broker@Cloud raised its profile by mounting an exhibition at the UK National Software Testing Conference. The conference, which attracts participants mainly from industry, took place on 19 - 20 May, 2015, at the British Museum, London. Representing Broker@Cloud, Anthony Simons joined forces with a team from the Advanced Computing Research Centre, Sheffield, in co-sponsoring an exhibition stand. We were there from 08:00 for the two days, meeting representatives from such companies as Accenture, Capita, Birlasoft, 31 Media, PlanIt, InfoStretch and Aqua (a new venture for cross-platform testing of mobile applications). Anthony Simons ran a live demonstration of Testing-as-a-Service over the web, generating executable test files in different formats. Visitors to our stand took materials relating both to software testing in particular, and also to Cloud service quality assurance in general, covering all the areas promoted by Broker@Cloud. The ACRC also advertised its collaborative research and consultancy services.
Anthony Simons (Broker@Cloud), with Phil McMinn and Mat Hall (ACRC) ready for business at the UK National Software Testing Conference, London.
The industry focus on testing this year was mostly in two areas. The first of these, Behaviour-Driven Design, is a means of writing user-stories so that these can be mapped more easily onto software tests, so linking the perspectives of the business analyst and the test developer through supporting tools. The second theme was DevOps, the strategy used for development and deployment across different platforms, with continuous integration testing. We had something to offer there, with the capability of translating high-level tests into different formats for different platforms. The visitors to our stand were quite impressed with the power of model-based testing, since in industry the state-of-the-art mostly relies on the ingenuity of developers and end-users to think up appropriate tests, which often misses important negative test cases. The need for high-quality software testing was acknowledged as becoming increasingly important, as software permeates more areas of everyday life, and the liability for poor software is being challenged in courts. Chris Ambler, a keynote speaker, foresaw the death of the old role of the post-hoc humble software tester, and the need for Software Development Engineers in Test (SDET), skilled developers who plan for quality from the outset.
We continued discussions over dinner on the first night, where the notion of "Fridge Terrorism" was the spectre on which hung the future security of the Internet-of-Things. Not only could hackers of the future try to gain control your home devices, but also WiFi will eventually be replaced by LiFi, ubiquitous information channels activated by modulated light sources. You might walk under a street lamp and upload your life from smart wearables. All of this meant that the need for rigorous quality assurance was always going to be with us.