Click here to close now.

Welcome!

Java Authors: Kevin Benedict, Pat Romanski, Dan Ristic, Carmen Gonzalez, Liz McMillan

Related Topics: Java, Microservices Journal, .NET, AJAX & REA

Java: Article

The Day the QA Died

There is only one logical way to go: developer testing

by Eli Lopian - The Industrial Revolution began about 250 years ago and machines started to take over for human labor in factories, fields, and mines. It is true that this lead to major economic growth, but machines still replaced the average worker who could not get another job or find a new skill to learn, which hurt many people. The similarity of the situation QA testing finds itself in currently is uncanny. QA was the big savior during the big internet boom - when budgets were virtually unlimited and software was being produced at an exponential rate. However, as the economy bottomed out, budgets deflated, Agile development became more widespread, and software continued soaring, automated testing began taking over. Just as manual labor became more obsolete over time due to the Industrial Revolution, manual QA testing finds itself faced with the same predicament.

Let's take a step back and examine how things used to work. Waterfall has always been the method of choice for most software development teams since the 1950's. This methodology allowed for developers to design everything upfront, then focus on their code, pass it on to QA for testing, and get it back with bugs to fix. Over time, systems are upgraded, development methods get better and faster, and we find ourselves producing so much software at such a fast rate, that we need more testers. More testers were hired and developers just got lazier knowing that QA will be there to catch their mistakes.

Meanwhile, in February of 2001, as the dot-com bubble was bursting, the Agile Manifesto was published and a new way of developer thinking started to emerge. Agile development methodologies breathed new life into the developer world, where adapting to ever-changing situations and rapidly deploying working software became the focus of development teams. Agile is more involved in each working part of a team and the code with a spotlight on developer testing rather than QA testing. As Agile continues to become more widespread and effective, QA is needed less and that means it has one foot out the door.

More QA, more problems
Enterprise software development is an expensive and very complex endeavor. For those reasons it is very common to find that the goals of the original plan are not reached, and management needs to decide how to react to this situation. There are really three routes a company can choose from in order to manage their time-to-market.

  1. Add Budget - You can't always throw more money at a project, but, if you could, you might be able to complete the project on time, taking into account the law of diminishing returns. You have to take into account critical paths that might make adding budget redundant. This is not a preferred scenario for management.
  2. Skimp on Features - Neither developers nor management are keen on giving customers less than they are paying for. This is definitely not an option for many companies.
  3. Lower Quality - Although bugs are a part of our lives that we will always have to deal with, software quality is probably the most important aspect of any product. However, it is also the first thing to get shoved under the bus.

What we are left with is a sense of imbalance. The developers are lazy and create code that is lacking in quality, while at the same time management is cutting down on QA. There is a fundamental flaw here. This is where Agile fundamentals can come into play.

It's an agile thing
With Agile's popularity bursting through the seams, developers and managers appeared to be able to find the way to great software. Like any great undertaking, though, there were, and still are, issues between those two sides that need to be worked on. However, one thing that everyone could agree on is that they wanted to produce better software, in the shortest time possible, and, in management's case, with as little investment as possible.

After the dot-com bubble burst and the economy was gradually working its way back, companies knew that they needed to create good software without the huge costs. This is where things got a little worrisome. How can QA department costs be justified?

Fortunately, Agile development is about testing your own code properly. While QA can still test fringe or flow cases, developers recognized the need to take responsibility for their code. One of the pillars of Agile development is working software. Some Agile methodologies include TDD and unit testing performed by the developers. Unit testing is about checking your part of the code; doing your part in order to make the whole better with the benefit of continuous, instant feedback that flushes bugs out quickly and cheaply. Without good unit testing coverage, it is very hard to stay Agile because the design continuously changes, and without knowledge of the bugs you create while developing the software, the development grinds to a halt.

Unit testing - possible QA killer
Unit testing is a method of testing your specific piece of code to make sure that it is working properly and will fit correctly into the software puzzle. It has been shown that with unit testing you can properly check over 90 percent of your code, and, unlike QA Automation tools, unit tests that are built correctly evolve with your codebase.

Now, I am not saying that unit testing is the answer to all of our development woes. However, as a platform for testing code (and creating abstract design), unit testing makes sense, costs less, and gets better quality software out the door quicker.. Automated unit testing and TDD is the next best thing when it comes to making great software. It allows developers to adapt their code to new features and other changes on-the-fly.

QA testing may have been the savior during the internet bubble of the late 90's, but companies are quickly realizing the inability of a QA team to adjust to design changes. With QA you have a department dedicated to sweeping for errors and then dumping the issues back on the developers for more iterations and fixes. Unit testing with Agile development promises working software once it leaves the developer's hands.

Where do we go from here?
I bet you are wondering why I chose this title for this piece. It may have something to do with the fact that I am a Don McLean fan. Beyond that, though, this felt like an apt title for an article on how software QA became a mainstay in corporate application development and why the QA department is on the proverbial brink of extinction. As the title points out, QA is dead. However, we are still seeing QA departments and professionals in corporate software development. The question is how long will this be the case? I personally feel that it is only a matter of time until we see a more dramatic shift to developer testing departments. What this means is that developers will be in charge of testing their own code and will not have a QA department to rely on.

Yes, there will still be many QA professionals working. I think we will see them working as part of the developer teams rather than in their own department. Costs are too high and speed is an issue with QA departments. There is only one logical way to go: developer testing.

As we move into this age of developer responsibility, we will see developers produce cleaner software that works as intended and with fewer bugs. It is now up to the corporations to recognize where they can save money and still produce great software.

by Eli Lopian,  CEO of Typemock

More Stories By NCSM Strategic Marketing

Lazer Cohen writes on a variety of subjects including cloud, security, telecom, HTML5, software & software testing, bug-prevention and start-up markets. You are invited to follow @NCSM_PR

@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that BroadSoft, the leading global provider of Unified Communications and Collaboration (UCC) services to operators worldwide, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's WebRTC Summit, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. BroadSoft is the leading provider of software and services that enable mobile, fixed-line and cable service providers to offer Unified Communications over their Internet Protocol networks. The Company’s core communications platform enables the delivery of a range of enterprise and consumer calling...
VoxImplant has announced full WebRTC support in the newest versions of its Android SDK and iOS SDK. The updated SDKs, which enable audio and video calls on mobile devices, are now compatible with the WebRTC standard to allow any mobile app to communicate with WebRTC-enabled browsers, including Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Opera, and, when available, Microsoft Spartan. The WebRTC-updated SDKs represent VoxImplant's continued leadership in simplifying the development of real-time communications (RTC) services for app developers. VoxImplant (built by Zingaya, the real-time communication servi...
SYS-CON Events announced today that GENBAND, a leading developer of real time communications software solutions, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's WebRTC Summit, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. The GENBAND team will be on hand to demonstrate their newest product, Kandy. Kandy is a communications Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) that enables companies to seamlessly integrate more human communications into their Web and mobile applications - creating more engaging experiences for their customers and boosting collaboration and productiv...
The IoT Bootcamp is coming to Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo on June 9-10 at the Javits Center in New York. Instructor. Registration is now available at http://iotbootcamp.sys-con.com/ Instructor Janakiram MSV previously taught the famously successful Multi-Cloud Bootcamp at Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo in November in Santa Clara. Now he is expanding the focus to Janakiram is the founder and CTO of Get Cloud Ready Consulting, a niche Cloud Migration and Cloud Operations firm that recently got acquired by Aditi Technologies. He is a Microsoft Regional Director for Hyderabad, India, and one of the f...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Optimal Design, an Internet of Things solution provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Optimal Design is an award winning product development firm offering industrial design and engineering services to the consumer, medical, and defense markets.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Vicom Computer Services, Inc., a provider of technology and service solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. They are located at booth #427. Vicom Computer Services, Inc. is a progressive leader in the technology industry for over 30 years. Headquartered in the NY Metropolitan area. Vicom provides products and services based on today’s requirements around Unified Networks, Cloud Computing strategies, Virtualization around Software defined Data Ce...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Ciqada will exhibit at SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Ciqada™ makes it easy to connect your products to the Internet. By integrating key components - hardware, servers, dashboards, and mobile apps - into an easy-to-use, configurable system, your products can quickly and securely join the internet of things. With remote monitoring, control, and alert messaging capability, you will meet your customers' needs of tomorrow - today! Ciqada. Let your products take flight. For more inform...
What exactly is a cognitive application? In her session at 16th Cloud Expo, Ashley Hathaway, Product Manager at IBM Watson, will look at the services being offered by the IBM Watson Developer Cloud and what that means for developers and Big Data. She'll explore how IBM Watson and its partnerships will continue to grow and help define what it means to be a cognitive service, as well as take a look at the offerings on Bluemix. She will also check out how Watson and the Alchemy API team up to offer disruptive APIs to developers.
The 17th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. 17th International Cloud Expo, to be held November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, APM, APIs, Microservices, Security, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal today!
With IoT exploding, massive data will transform businesses with opportunities to monetize almost anything that can be measured. In this C-Level Roundtable Discussion at @ThingsExpo, Brendan O’Brien, Aria Systems Co-founder and Chief Evangelist, will lead an expert panel of consultants, thought leaders and practitioners who will look at these new monetization trends, discuss the implications, and detail lessons learned from their collective experience. Finally, the panel will point the way forward for enterprises who wish to leverage the resulting complex recurring revenue models, adding valu...
How is unified communications transforming the way businesses operate? In his session at WebRTC Summit, Arvind Rangarajan, Director of Product Marketing at BroadSoft, will discuss how to extend unified communications experience outside the enterprise through WebRTC. He will also review use cases across different industry verticals. Arvind Rangarajan is Director, Product Marketing at BroadSoft. He has over 19 years of experience in the telecommunications industry in various roles such as Software Development, Product Management and Product Marketing, applied across Wireless, Unified Communic...
Buzzword alert: Microservices and IoT at a DevOps conference? What could possibly go wrong? Join this panel of experts as they peel away the buzz and discuss the important architectural principles behind implementing IoT solutions for the enterprise. As remote IoT devices and sensors become increasingly intelligent, they become part of our distributed cloud environment, and we must architect and code accordingly. At the very least, you’ll have no problem filling in your buzzword bingo cards.
Internet of Things (IoT) will be a hybrid ecosystem of diverse devices and sensors collaborating with operational and enterprise systems to create the next big application. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Bramh Gupta, founder and CEO of robomq.io, and Fred Yatzeck, principal architect leading product development at robomq.io, will discuss how choosing the right middleware and integration strategy from the get-go will enable IoT solution developers to adapt and grow with the industry, while at the same time reduce Time to Market (TTM) by using plug and play capabilities offered by a robust I...
@ThingsExpo has been named the Top 5 Most Influential Internet of Things Brand by Onalytica in the ‘The Internet of Things Landscape 2015: Top 100 Individuals and Brands.' Onalytica analyzed Twitter conversations around the #IoT debate to uncover the most influential brands and individuals driving the conversation. Onalytica captured data from 56,224 users. The PageRank based methodology they use to extract influencers on a particular topic (tweets mentioning #InternetofThings or #IoT in this case) takes into account the number and quality of contextual references that a user receives.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Dyn, the worldwide leader in Internet Performance, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Dyn is a cloud-based Internet Performance company. Dyn helps companies monitor, control, and optimize online infrastructure for an exceptional end-user experience. Through a world-class network and unrivaled, objective intelligence into Internet conditions, Dyn ensures traffic gets delivered faster, safer, and more reliably than ever.
IoT is still a vague buzzword for many people. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mike Kavis, Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Partners, discussed the business value of IoT that goes far beyond the general public's perception that IoT is all about wearables and home consumer services. He also discussed how IoT is perceived by investors and how venture capitalist access this space. Other topics discussed were barriers to success, what is new, what is old, and what the future may hold. Mike Kavis is Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Pa...
The only place to be June 9-11 is Cloud Expo & @ThingsExpo 2015 East at the Javits Center in New York City. Join us there as delegates from all over the world come to listen to and engage with speakers & sponsors from the leading Cloud Computing, IoT & Big Data companies. Cloud Expo & @ThingsExpo are the leading events covering the booming market of Cloud Computing, IoT & Big Data for the enterprise. Speakers from all over the world will be hand-picked for their ability to explore the economic strategies that utility/cloud computing provides. Whether public, private, or in a hybrid form, clo...
The WebRTC Summit 2015 New York, to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York, NY, announces that its Call for Papers is open. Topics include all aspects of improving IT delivery by eliminating waste through automated business models leveraging cloud technologies. WebRTC Summit is co-located with 16th International Cloud Expo, @ThingsExpo, Big Data Expo, and DevOps Summit.
As Marc Andreessen says software is eating the world. Everything is rapidly moving toward being software-defined – from our phones and cars through our washing machines to the datacenter. However, there are larger challenges when implementing software defined on a larger scale - when building software defined infrastructure. In his session at 16th Cloud Expo, Boyan Ivanov, CEO of StorPool, will provide some practical insights on what, how and why when implementing "software-defined" in the datacenter.
While not quite mainstream yet, WebRTC is starting to gain ground with Carriers, Enterprises and Independent Software Vendors (ISV’s) alike. WebRTC makes it easy for developers to add audio and video communications into their applications by using Web browsers as their platform. But like any market, every customer engagement has unique requirements, as well as constraints. And of course, one size does not fit all. In her session at WebRTC Summit, Dr. Natasha Tamaskar, Vice President, Head of Cloud and Mobile Strategy at GENBAND, will explore what is needed to take a real time communications ...