Testerzy.pl conference is a new event on the Polish map of tester meetings. The first edition took place on March 1 in the Gdańsk Science and Technology Park, which is known for hosting many events of local IT communities and is a perfect place for it. The need to organize this type of events in our city may be proved by the fact that that there were more people eager to participate, than the venue could accommodate.

During the conference there were lectures, workshops and an absolute novelty, that is, the opportunity to take advantage of career coaching combined with elements of career counseling. Everyone who was among the lucky ones who managed to participate in the event surely found something interesting. I’d like to share the coverage of the lectures we could hear throughout the day.

Old stagers in action

Michał Buczko opened the conference with the presentation: “Construction of the ideal team – retrospective”. He focused on telling the story of his team and all the stages he experienced while working on a project. It all started with the fact that people didn’t want to, and most of all they couldn’t cooperate with each other in any way. What to do when lack of communication kills inventiveness? Put everyone in one conference room with glass walls and give them one goal. – to survive. Sounds terrible? Because it is. However, it turned out that shock therapy was just what made it all sorted out.

The next speaker was Jakub Rosiński, whose speech was rated the highest by all participants of the conference. “Think first, then automate”. Many of us are fixated on the automation of everything that comes to mind. As Jakub correctly pointed out, the goal of automatic testing is not testing but merely providing us with information that we as humans, intelligent beings have to interpret. What to automate in this case? First of all: the most important tests. The ones that are most frequent and the writing and maintenance won’t cause too many problems. The recording of Jakub’s lecture is now available on the testerzy.pl channel on Youtube. I highly recommend them to anyone who is responsible for test automation or would like to deal with this topic in the future.

Learning first

The next two presentations covered the broad issue of learning. In the first one Radek Smilgin tried to talk about what “Testing Education Today” looks like. In further issues such as education through example, education at school or education through work with examples from life, we were able to draw conclusions about how we learn, how we should and what was our perception of the world throughout our lives.

Monika Lichota-Cywińska showed us that “Testing different methods of effective learning” isn’t as demanding as it might seem. The presentation was based on a book by Radek Kotarski entitled “Hack into the brain”, which I also recommend. Sometimes thanks to simple procedures, we can increase learning efficiency and thus significantly shorten the entire process.

Kasia Balcerzak had a presentation: “What the developers taught me about quality”. As she admitted, it was a summary of her year as a Quality Engineer. What path she went through, what difficulties she encountered and how she dealt with them could be a canvas of not one lecture but at least a few. The main motif, repeated throughout the story was the role and importance of cooperation between QE and developers. How to convince the other party not only to cooperate but also to take full responsibility for the quality? That we could learn by listening to Kasia. Undoubtedly, this is one of those lectures, in which case it is worth looking for the recording.  

Recruitment, action!

Karol Kidawa told us “How to recruit yourself to the position of a tester”. It was an extremely valuable presentation for all those who are just starting to apply for their first job or want to change it. Karol defined who the software tester is for him and which features and skills he should have. But above all he presented what tasks he can expect during the interview and what answers the interviewer hopes to hear. I think we can meet similar challenges not only in the company in which Karol works, but also in many others. Therefore, if you are at the beginning of your path, you should take these advices to heart and benefit from it. It will increase your chances for the desired work in this demanding profession.

In addition to the above, we listened to the lecture “Behavior-Driven Disaster”. We learned what BDD is, what it gives us and when it has no sense. “Tester’s life cycle – skilful management of change” in turn was a story about changes – in our life, at work, and about how to deal with them. The conference was closed by the lecture “Machine learning in penetration tests – a breakthrough tool or just a gadget?” We didn’t get a definitive answer to a question, but we learned that machine learning is used in testing and will have a bigger and bigger contribution.

Summary

The first edition of the testerzy.pl conference was an extremely successful event. I’m glad that Gdańsk became the next city after Wroclaw and Gliwice, which gained its annual, free test conference. Because the fact that the next edition will take place leaves no doubt – it has already been announced. Look out for recordings from the lectures on the testerzy.pl official YouTube channel.

Have you been to the testerzy.pl conference? Be sure to share your impressions in the comments below.

Certified Agile Tester and Requirements Analyst, holds a postgraduate diploma in software testing and requirements engineering. As a Scrum team member infects everyone at Aspire Systems Poland with his uncompromising attitude towards quality assurance.