Monday, 12 November 2012

Eurostar 2012 Reflections


And now the reflection:
  • I loved the testing keynotes – not a single duffer and everyone hit the conference theme ( I hope I can include mine in that statement)
    • Alan Page, fully bearded up – any respectable Alan knows he should present himself thusly, encouraged building a web of ideas and seeking out new knowledge, and now that I have his gamer tag I can see when he beats me on Trials HD
    • Simon Stewart, fully bearded up – as any respectable WebDriver speaker knows he should present himself, gave a good overview of the history of Selenium, with parts I didn’t know before.
    • Mike Kelly, gave a really interesting overview of start-ups and testing therein. Good links to various lean startup style material: leancanvas. (see also DeveloperTown)
    • All of the above talks, and myself included encouraged a focus on value, constantly learning, and bringing in new ideas.
  • I also enjoyed the non-testing keynotes:
    • John Seddon summarised his process using call centre improvement as an example. I have read all of John’s books and can recommend them. I like John’s approach of going back to the source so we don’t get stuck at Womack’s marketing version of lean, instead research back to Deming and Taiichi Ohno.
      • John doesn’t really mention Juran, so I will here – recommended for your on-going management study.
    • Peter Madsen gave a great talk about hobby building submarines and rocket ships, and I took away more weight behind the notion that we just have to get on with the doing and take responsibility for overcoming our obstacles.
  • Esther Gons created a summary visualisation of all the keynotes, with a few other lucky speakers getting the visualisation treatment.
  • I didn’t attend too many track sessions:
    • Alexandra Schladebeck linked World of Warcraft (which I haven’t played, but might now) gave a good overview of Agile using WoW as the illustration and used the entertaining “Leroy Jenkins” video as an illustration of planning and teamwork. Esther Gons provided a visualisation of this talk.
    • Adrian Rapan talked about Security Testing using WebDriver with his source code on Google code
    • Graham Thomas’s track session reminded me that we used to auto-generate applications, we don’t seem to do as much of that anymore
    • Olli-Pekka Puolitaival presented the OSMO model based testing tool and this stood out as something I want to spend time investigating. Open sourced, using Java, simple annotation based. I haven’t tried it yet, but I will.
    • And Fiona Charles’s workshop on Mind-mapping gave me a chance to see how other people approach mind mapping – I wandered around the room to look at the output of the different groups
  • I spent much of the time standing around speaking to people. I met too many people to mention, as you tend to at conferences, some great people from the testing world that I hadn’t really bumped in to before. Consequently I didn’t get as much time as I wanted to speak to people that I have met before, and some people I only waved to in passing.
  • Somehow I missed the cake to celebrate Eurostar’s 20th Birthday.
  • I won’t mention the evening drinking dining and socialising, Eurostar always has a good social environment, this year proved no exception. 

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