Summary and Info
As a software developer, I see the importance of good testing on a day to day basis. It is the essential piece of the puzzle that ensures that your efforts bare fruit in terms of business value. However, I also see it as the most neglected and poorly implemented aspect of producing software - at least with some of the projects and environments I worked on (and, sadly, I certainly haven't always been an exception).
Having read this book my drive to improve the testing practices, procedures, and tools has been dramatically invigorated. Of particular interest to me, because they tie more directly with the work I do on a day to day basis, were the chapters on agile development, continuous integration, automated testing, and the associated tools. Chapter 14, "Test-Driven Development: Driving New Standards of Beauty" and "Beautiful Testing as the Cornerstone of Business Success" were truly awe-inspiring. They drew a picture in my mind of the perfect development environment, and even give somewhat of a road-map to get there.
Some of the chapters were excellent for their high level breadth. Chapter 2, "Beautiful Testing Satisfies Stakeholders" and chapter 6, "Bug Management and Test Case Effectiveness" gives you a good sense of the value proposition of a good testing foundation.
Others were a real joy to read (well...I guess if you're a geek). Chapter 1 was an entertaining, yet insightful, view into the mind of a tester. Chapter 12 was dramatic and really made you feel the weight of the pressure to make sure the testing was impeccable. One of my favorite chapters was "Software Development is a Creative Process", chapter 13. This chapter distilled how I feel about development.
There were a few chapter that didn't give me much value. Many of the chapters were very narrowly focused on a specific technology or project, and didn't do enough, in my opinion, to relate the chapter to the larger scope. Chapter 21, "Web Application Testing With Windmill" read almost like marketing material for the product. I also didn't get much out of "Beautiful XMPP Testing" (chapter 6) and "Testing a Random Number Generator" (chapter 10). These chapter, however, really didn't detract from the overall superb quality of the writing or high value of the information contained in this book - not to mention that it is probably a matter of perspective.
If you are involved in any aspect of software development, you should consider this required reading. The knowledge and insight taken out of this book will certainly make me more effective professionally.
More About the Author
Adam Goucher (born February 18, 1975) is a retired American cross-country and track and field athlete.
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