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Lessons Learned in Software Testing: A Context-Driven Approach [Paperback]

by Cem Kaner, James Bach, Bret Pettichord
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)

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Book Description

December 31, 2001 0471081124 978-0471081128 1
Decades of software testing experience condensed into the most important lessons learned.

The world's leading software testing experts lend you their wisdom and years of experience to help you avoid the most common mistakes in testing software. Each lesson is an assertion related to software testing, followed by an explanation or example that shows you the how, when, and why of the testing lesson. More than just tips, tricks, and pitfalls to avoid, Lessons Learned in Software Testing speeds you through the critical testing phase of the software development project without the extensive trial and error it normally takes to do so. The ultimate resource for software testers and developers at every level of expertise, this guidebook features:
* Over 200 lessons gleaned from over 30 years of combined testing experience
* Tips, tricks, and common pitfalls to avoid by simply reading the book rather than finding out the hard way
* Lessons for all key topic areas, including test design, test management, testing strategies, and bug reporting
* Explanations and examples of each testing trouble spot help illustrate each lesson's assertion

Frequently Bought Together

Lessons Learned in Software Testing: A Context-Driven Approach + Testing Computer Software, 2nd Edition + Agile Testing: A Practical Guide for Testers and Agile Teams
Price for all three: $118.13

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"If testing is something that is going to be an important part of your career buy this book and read it carefully." (CVu - Jnl of the Association C & C++ Users, February 2002)

"...a real gem?for me, this book is one that I shall find useful?each and every test department should have several copies available...be prepared to be inspired, or at the very least to have your ideas challenged..." (Professional Tester, September 2002)

"...a refreshing and enjoyable book?it will not be 'shelf-ware', but a well-used reference..." (Software Testing, Verification & Reliability, March 2003)

"...will make fascinating reading?highly recommended..." (CVu, Dec 03)

Review

"...part of a rare breed of informative books which are both accessible to beginners whilst still being of great use to experts. No matter how much you know about software testing, Kaner, Bach and Pettiford still have a few lessons to teach you..."(M2 Communications, 7 June 2002)

Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (December 31, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0471081124
  • ISBN-13: 978-0471081128
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 7.4 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #27,251 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
100 of 108 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read a few at a time January 10, 2002
Format:Paperback
This book contains 293 "Lessons". Each seems to be meant for people with certain experiences and certain problems; some very broadly defined, others more tightly. So, how do I grade 293 lessons? One way would be to average them, another to pick on the worst (from my point of view). I choose to pick out the ones that hit me the hardest; the best from my point of view.
I've been a developer, a tester, a test manager, and am now a grad student studying testing with Dr. Kaner. This book was the proximate cause of the last. If I had had this book a couple of years ago, I believe I would have done a much better job as test manager, and my project would have succeeded better with our customer. This is the second best book on testing that I've ever read.
By the time I saw Lesson 31, I had already learned it the hard way. "A Requirement is a quality or condition that matters to someone who matters." It doesn't matter what the requirements document says; you ignore the opinion of someone who matters at your peril. I did.
Lesson 57: "Make your bug report an effective sales tool." My bug reports developed a pretty good reputation with most of the developers, so I quit paying as much attention to putting convincing arguments in them. Then, we got some new senior developers. I was back at square one without quite realizing how I got there. Don't do that.
Lesson 235: "Staff the testing team with diverse backgrounds." When I became test manager, I looked for people like me: computer science degree with developer experience. Well, such people don't work as testers, especially for the location and money we offered. I first hired a young woman with Army training. Later, I figured out how lucky I had been; she was one of the two best testers who worked for me.
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47 of 49 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book, but not a tutorial February 10, 2004
Format:Paperback
I noticed that many of the reviewers listed above are noted SW testing professionals that have published books themselves. I also noticed that these same professionals tend to supply glowing reviews for each other. I think this might lead to a bit of a bias that could mislead ordinary folks looking for a good reference tool to help them do their job.
I've been in the SW test business for several years and have used Cem Kaner's "Testing Computer Software 2nd Edition" as a bible for many years. Mr. Kaner's "Lessons Learned in Software Testing" is a great help for both rookies and seasoned veterans alike, but mainly for anecdotal wisdom. I wish I had the opportunity to read this book early in my career, it would have prevented some of the painful lessons I've learned about the testing business. At the same time, portions of this book are opinions and observations, and should be read with an open mind, but not read as gospel. I often read sections of this book to reassure myself that my actions/decisions/processes are sound.
This book is not a "how to" guide with sample forms and processes to follow, but a very useful collection of wisdom from some of the best minds in testing. Think of this book as three wise people sharing their knowledge with anyone willing to listen (or ante up the bucks to buy the book).
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40 of 49 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
If you test software, or depend on people who do, then read this book. Each page effervesces with hard-won advice for handling the practical problems you encounter every day.
Software testing is an increasingly complicated discipline that suffers from too much liturgy, too little experience and too many conflicting theories. Kaner, Bach, and Pettichord balance this with a wealth of practical, empirical knowledge. In particular, their emphasis on the contextual factors of software testing brings out the value in understanding conflicting points of view.
This book will help you be a better tester or test manager. I expect to refer to it every week.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fast Forward for Your Career February 11, 2002
Format:Paperback
I had the pleasure of reviewing this book as it was being written. It is a real gem.
This book is a tool that will be valuable throughout your career. It is filled with practical suggestions and observations based on decades of experience. You will not find religious wars here, just real-world experience with wide application.
This book will pay for itself very quickly. I have used the weekly status report format on page 183 for several projects and found it to be much more effective than any previous formats.
If you use pairwise testing, pages 52-60, the book has paid for itself. I've used pairwise testing to reduce an impossible number of combinations (864) to a small number of test cases that effectively covered what needed to be tested.
If you want to get the bugs you find fixed, read Chapter 4. If you do automated testing, you can climb way up the learning curve by reading Chapter 5. If you're making decisions about how much test documentation to write, read Chapter 6. If you're involved in management, read Chapter 9. If you're interested in managing your career, read Chapter 10. I could go on.
I've worked in diverse environments on wildly different products. This book has something for every work situation and test problem I've faced. On a scale of 10, I would give it 100 for greatly exceeding my expectations.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book
Must read for all software testers and test managers. Book contains lots of practical knowledge, not only dull theory. Read more
Published 1 day ago by Slawomir Radzyminski
5.0 out of 5 stars Lessons Learned in Software Testing: A Context-Driven Approach
Got this book as part of a recommended text many years ago and decide to get the digital version to refer to it often. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Etin
4.0 out of 5 stars Still reading
This is older stuff, but from three experts so although not in keeping with today's agile concept, still great lessons.
Published 3 months ago by Dayle I Fish
4.0 out of 5 stars As promised
This is a really good book and as it is said on the preface, it's not a book that you read from cover to cover. Read more
Published 5 months ago by fmcf
5.0 out of 5 stars Relevant advice for software testers today
I think of this book as a coffee table book of wise advice, only without the pictures of kitties or babies swathed in roses. Read more
Published 12 months ago by B. Bailey
5.0 out of 5 stars Jam packed ideas!
Love this book and keep coming back. Well done.
Really enjoy how this book is structured and and and and
Published 13 months ago by Thomas Peterson
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for software testers
I am a professional software tester. I found this book to be very good, full of great advice.

I followed their advice of reading a little bit at a time - every day I... Read more
Published 20 months ago by Marla Cox
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent reading
I am a Software Tester and I recommend this book to all that work with software development.
The book is fantastic and it helped me a lot in my daily work.
Published 22 months ago by Stefan
5.0 out of 5 stars Be a tester!
An excellent way to become a good tester. Read this book an you will benefit from an interesting experience in testing. Read more
Published on April 8, 2012 by L'eglise orthodoxe Stavropoleos
5.0 out of 5 stars Good read guaranteed, if...
You use your brain people! I've read a few reviews now that refer to this book not `giving the answers' so to speak. Read more
Published on January 31, 2012 by David Greenlees
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