Testing Positive

I gave a talk at the Sydney Testers Meetup last year called something very New-Age-sounding like “The Power of Positive Testing”. It was a short talk with a positive message so I thought I’d spruce it up a bit and present it to the London Tester Gathering now that I live on this side of the pond. The old slides looked a bit boring though, so I decided to make them look a bit more interesting.

Then I had a mad idea. Hey, how about I code my presentation!

So I dug up an old Smashing Magazine free HTML5 parallax effect template and several hours and one small coding tantrum later, I had this little beauty. Pretty cool, right?

Those of you who are viewing it on anything other than a standard 13″ Macbook Air resolution can already see the hilarious flaw in my plan.

Yes, of course I tested it and I knew it would have issues in different screen resolutions. But like a true laidback Aussie stereotype, I thought she’ll be right, MVP mate, I just need to get it working on my laptop and mirror the screen on the projector. At least, that’s what I’d do if any of the screen output adaptors I had worked with the projector. In the end it wasn’t such a disaster though, as I’d already uploaded it to this web server and could access it from someone else’s laptop which had a working converter (thanks Deri!). It just looked a bit wonky in the different screen resolution and didn’t scroll so smoothly on Deri’s Compaq.

Anyway, valuable lessons learned about giving presentations:
– Adaptors are cheap, just buy tons of them and bring them all. Why not.
– If you’re giving a presentation about software testing or development and you’ve coded your presentation, make sure it works properly.
– Actually just don’t code your presentation, it’s probably not worth it. With the time you save, you could be rehearsing! Or learning a second language. Or watching TV. Or doing just about anything else that’s better than coding your presentation.
– Stock photos be damned – all that Instagramming has finally paid off!
– Have a backup plan. Make this backup plan involve a USB thumb drive. Do not make this backup plan involve the internet. Especially do not make this backup plan involve Github.

Who am I kidding – I had fun with this, and I got to tell a funny story too. Plus I learned a little bit more about HTML5 and CSS in the process. Overall the presentation was well-received, and that’s the important part.

If you’re interested in what the talk was actually about, Dan Ashby has written a great blog post about it.

For my next act, I’ll be speaking at the Selenium Conference in Boston in June. With sensible slides. Probably. :)

4 thoughts on “Testing Positive

  1. I think that a good tester must be a little evil minded to find defects, but a superior tester is also capable to hide that to some degree and is able to communicate positive things.

Comments are closed.