I just spent the last 3 days doing the Rapid Software Testing Course run by James Bach. It was an excellent and fun course and I learned heaps from it – highly recommended for anyone interested in testing. One of the things James taught was a “blink test” – basically a test where you run a heap of data in front of you very fast to look for patterns or problems.
So I was thinking today about uses for GUI automation and how GUI automation often blindly flies by obvious bugs, and how I’ve often found bugs while watching automated smoke tests run. If you run a huge suite of test cases overnight it’s not worth watching the whole suite run because that would take hours. But hey, what if we just grab the automated tests that run in the area that we’re interested in and watch them while they run? Not only would it offer us an inexpensive way to spot interesting things, but it serves the dual purpose of being a soft audit for the automated tests, to make sure that they’re still doing their jobs properly.
Does anybody already do this? An automation blink test?