Seattle Area Software Quality Assurance Group

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Past Meetings 2005

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Key Measurements for Testers (Part1)
November 2005

(We hope to invite Pam back early in 2006 to finish the second half of her presentation)

What more can a test team measure than just the number of open and closed defects or test cases run? As any quality professional knows, there is a lot more to running a good test team than the bug count. This presentation will present several measures that are easy to identify and collect that give key insight into the testing process. These measures will allow you to go past the bug count to more effectively manage and predict your testing process. You will be able to give data to back answers to questions like, �How much time do you need in testing?� and, �Is the software good enough to release?�

PowerPoint Slides (460KB)


by Pamela Perrott
Construx Software

Ms. Perrott works as a Senior Quality Architect at Construx Software. She has been in the IT industry for 23 years as a programmer, systems programmer, analyst, project manager for tools implementations, and instructor. Pam is a member of the Computer Society of the IEEE, the Association for Computing Machinery, the Data Resource Management Association, the Puget Sound Chapter of the Association for Women in Computing, the Puget Sound Chapter of the Special Interest Group on the Computer-Human Interface (SIGCHI).

Pam has an AB from Bryn Mawr College in Biology, an MA from Cambridge University in Biochemistry, a Certificate in Data Processing from North Seattle Community College, and a Master's in Software Engineering from Seattle University. She is also a Certified Function Point Specialist (CFPS) and a Certified Software Test Engineer (CSTE).


BEYOND THE TOOLS: Principles for an Effective Test Automation Framework
October 2005
Come participate in an interactive session in which we will discuss real-world techniques and tools that address the challenges of traditional automation solutions. We will share real-world examples and approaches to help you build a successful, cost effective test automation environment.


by Christian Molnar, Application Services Director, Excell

Christian is responsible for leading Excell's Application Services Quality Assurance group, which delivers comprehensive Quality Assurance services with an emphasis on functional and load automation solutions. Christian's 13 years in the IT and consulting industry includes management roles with ST Labs, Data Dimensions,, and UPS. Prior to joining Excell he held the role of Director of Engineering, delivering multi-tiered web based applications built on Microsoft technologies. Christian holds a BS in Computer Science from Brigham Young University.

Criteria-based Test Case Design
September 2005
With large software systems, providing provable test coverage is difficult. Structured methods of test case design can help to ensure the maximum amount of coverage for the test effort but no one test case design system can help you sleep well at night. Given the type of information available to the test designer, test case design methods can be combined to give sufficient and efficient test coverage.

This presentation will give practical guidance about the use of test case design methods in combination to ensure adequate test coverage. Additionally, a criteria-based framework will be used to determine what test case methods will be more effective given the production environment and information available to the test designer.
 PowerPoint Slides (260KB)

by Tracy Monteith, Microsoft Test Training

Tracy Monteith is a software professional with a 20+ years in software development. He has designed test systems for the pharmaceutical, transportation, academic, banking, telephone, computer hardware, and software industries. Tracy currently works at Microsoft as a Test trainer where he provides test training for the companies' worldwide test population.

How Early, Proactive Test Planning Contributes to Project Success
August 2005
How can the software test or SQA function be a direct contributor to project success? By helping to address a critical problem in many software development projects: missing important requirements until late in the development life cycle. The impact of a missing or misunderstood requirement can add to the project cost and delay product launch due to rework both of the application code and documentation, and additional test passes. Building a thorough test plan very early in the product development cycle has the potential for early discovery of missing requirements with attendant reduction in project costs and schedule improvement.

We will survey the various reasons of how and why requirements can be missed in software development projects and show how the early formulation of a test plan can directly address these factors. Key to the success of this approach is the understanding that mature tests often go beyond the documented requirements for applications and into exploring the boundaries of the application domain where missing requirements can often be uncovered. In addition, the test methodology of looking at features from multiple users' perspectives and less common use cases, shed light on misinterpreted and/or misunderstood requirements.
Slides (50KB PowerPoint)
Sample Test Plan (27KB Word)


by Jim Nindel-Edwards, 
Software QA Lead for Costco

Mr. Nindel-Edwards serves as Software Quality Assurance Lead for the and sites, working for Costco Wholesale at the Issaquah, WA corporate headquarters. Jim's background includes more than 30 years of software development and QA experience working for major NW corporations include Weyerhaeuser, Boeing, and Microsoft in both management and technical lead roles. Jim's educational background includes a M.S. in Information System Management (Seattle Pacific University, 2003) and a B.S. from U. of Minnesota (1973).



Software Testing: The Next Generation
July 2005
Internal and external influences are causing great change in the software industry. Software companies are tightening the financial belts and no longer hiring a plethora of "domain experts" as testers to bang out the bugs. Software complexity is increasing and customers are demanding higher quality. Test driven development and the renewed drive for unit level tests are improving the base level quality of features delivered by the development teams. Poorly designed software hacked together and thrown over the fence relying on testers to find the bugs is simply not scalable to large or complex systems, or for products with long term maintenance. The result is software companies will require testers who are more efficient and more effective in accurately evaluating quality. Unfortunately, the simple fact is the majority of testers in the industry today are poorly equipped to face the challenges of tomorrow. This talk demonstrates the consequences of the general lack of formal training in the industry today using empirical data of general test effectiveness. It also discusses the changes in attitude and self improvement that testers need to make in order to mature the discipline into a profession.

SASQAG PowerPoint Slides (261k)

Star West Version (386k)

by BJ Rollison, 
Test Architect, Microsoft Corp.

Mr. Rollison has more than 16 years experience in the software industry. He started his professional career at a small OEM company in Japan developing custom solutions for hospitals and local government agencies. In 1994 he joined the Windows 95 project focusing on the internationalization of the Windows operating system. In 1996, BJ became a test manager in the Internet Client and Consumer division responsible for several client products and a web server. He moved to Microsoft's Internal Technical Education group in 1999 as the Test Training Manager responsible for planning and organizing training for the more than 6,000 test engineers at Microsoft. About 2 years ago BJ became a technical trainer in the Engineering Excellence Group where he designs and develops and delivers intensive hands on technical training curriculum for new and experienced test engineers at Microsoft. BJ also teaches software testing courses at the University of Washington, and sits on the advisory boards for software testing certificate programs at the University of Washington and Lake Washington Technical College.

Working in Open Space
June 2006
This month we will be repeating an activity we did in June 2002. We will present a short overview of "Open Space". Just enough "OJT" (on the job training) to allow the membership that joins us Thursday night to help us brainstorm the future of SASQAG. We want to know how we can make SASQAG even more relevant and useful to you, our membership.

Whoever shows up this Thursday night will be the right people to tackle this doesn't matter if you are a long-time member, or if this is your first meeting. As an added benefit, you will get a "hands-on" workshop on how to use Open Space Technology in your working environment. 
Open Space Meeting Notes (Word format 40KB)

Lean Production

May 2005

Innovations in quality-improvement programs are changing the way companies operate today.  The discussion will provide an overview of the manufacturing approach to quality improvement known in the US as Lean Production; first pioneered by Toyota over 50 years ago, but only recently recognized as the secret sauce of their success.  In addition to improving quality, Lean Production helps cut costs, increase productivity and improve customer satisfaction. 


Although originating in on the manufacturing shop floor, Lean Production is now beginning to be applied with dramatic results in almost every industry.  Today service organizations across all industries, including Dell, Wal-Mart, Southwest Airlines and Microsoft have embraced Lean Production as more than just a passing fad.  The crossover from manufacturing to service based organizations innovating with Lean is just beginning.  This discussion will provide an overview of Lean Production and how its innovative techniques can be used for developing quality software.


PowerPoint Slides (420KB)




by Larry Schuiski

AGILEAN Corporation


Larry is the President/CEO of AGILEAN Corporation. He founded AGILEAN to evangelize how service-based organizations can apply Lean Production techniques to increase their return on investment from labor and capital.  Prior to AGILEAN, Larry was Senior Vice President of Worldwide Product Development and Technical Support for Attachmate Corporation, managing an organization of up to 400 people in 6 offices worldwide.  Larry�s previous roles include: a senior management consultant aligning business and IT strategies; the vice president of an electronic document division startup for a Fortune 500 company; the managing director for a UK subsidiary of a document management software company; and the operations director for a consulting firm specializing in document management and work flow analysis.  He is currently on the boards of the Business Alliance of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the WSA, Washington State�s Technology Trade Association.


It's Too Darn Big to Test
April 2005
Structuring test designs and prioritizing your test effort for large and complex software systems are daunting tasks, ones that have beaten many very good test engineers. If you add concurrency issues and a distributed system architecture to the mix, some would simply throw up their hands. At Microsoft, where Keith Stobie plies his trade, that is not an option. Keith and others have reengineered their testing, employing dependency analysis for test design, model property static checking, �all pairs� configuration testing, robust unit testing, and more. They employ coverage to successfully help select and prioritize tests and make effective use of random testing including fuzz testing security. Finally, models of their systems help them generate good stochastic tests and act as test oracles for automation.

� Test checklists for large, complex, distributed systems
� Appropriate use of code coverage with increased coverage for less effort
� Dependency analysis for improved test designs and race condition detection
PowerPoint Slides (972 KB)


by Keith Stobie, CSQE
Test Architect, Microsoft Corp.

Mr. Stobie plans, designs, and reviews software architecture and tests for Microsoft. His current project, Indigo, involves XML Messaging and Web Services using SOAP. Keith is also active in the Web Services Interoperability organization�s ( Test Working Group creating test tools for Profile analysis and conformance.

Keith directed and instructed in QA and Test process and strategy at BEA Systems where he worked on BEA WebLogic Collaborate, and WebLogic Enterprise. Keith was Test Architect at Informix, designing tests for the Parallel Server product, and Manager of Quality and Process Improvement. With over 20 years in the field, Keith is a leader in testing methodology, tools technology, and quality process. He is a qualified instructor for Systematic Software Testing and software inspections. Keith has been active in the software task group of ASQ, participant in IEEE 2003 and 2003.2 standards on test methods, published several articles, and presented at many quality and testing conferences. Keith has a BS in computer science from Cornell University.

Strategies for Managing Large Software Testing Environments and Activities
March 2005
Managing large software testing environments and their activities can be challenging if there is not the right level of organization, coordination and communication. This starts at the identification of the statement of work and ends with delivery of the code and test results to the next set of environments. This talk will give a brief overview of some of the strategies to meet the appropriate level. Some charting/measurement samples will be presented to give some ideas for status reporting.
PowerPoint Slides (936KB)


by John (J.D.) Drollinger, 
Integrated Validation Project Manager, 
The Boeing Co.

Mr. Drollinger started working for The Boeing Company in 1989 as a spares inventory planner for the B2 program working on converting the legacy systems to an MRPII system.  From there he went to Commercial Airplanes in the Interiors Responsible Center helping to prepare to convert the legacy systems.  For the last 9 years J.D. has supported the implementation of a large-scale business process re-engineering plan, dealing with the design, planning, manufacturing and quality.  His main responsibility is in integrated validation, where he has worked backward from managing the end user simulation testing activity to managing the Integrated Unit Test that supports application developers.  J.D. is also very active in his church and enjoys woodworking.

Open-Book Testing: a test orientation method
February 2005
No matter what the time and budget of a software development project, testers must understand what the software is supposed to do in order to test it.  There are several ways they can do that: attend design meetings, read specifications, talk with the Product Support team, and review the manual, to name a few.  Exploring the software is another way to build a model of functionality, but what if two testers have vastly different ways of exploring the software?  How do you maintain consistency in how testers build product knowledge?  Open-Book Testing means to give testers an open-ended series of questions to aid and coordinate their exploration, much like how college students are given an open-book exam.  In this talk, Jon explains how managers can use this method to immerse their testers quickly into the product such that testing happens sooner rather than later.
PowerPoint Slides (180KB)


by John Bach, Managing Test Lead, Quardev Laboratories

Mr. Bach is a senior consultant and managing test lead at Quardev Laboratories in Seattle.  In his 10 years of QC experience, he has managed testing projects for Microsoft, Rational, HP, Getty Images, Captaris, and Washington Mutual.  Since working as a test manager at Microsoft, he has presented several testing topics at various international testing conferences, written for testing magazines, and teaches testing techniques.  He is the Program Chair for the Association for Software Testing's first conference in Spring 2006, as well as speaker chairman for WSA's QASIG bi-monthly meetings.  He is the inventor of Open-Book Testing and co-inventor of Session-Based Test Management.

Use of Inspections as a Risk Mitigation Tool
January 2005
Using a case study approach, we'll investigate the concept of how the introduction of inspections prior to testing can help reduce development, testing and maintenance risks.  You'll be able to verify for yourself that methods suggested by experts will work to actually bring about a successful resolution of major project dilemmas.  We'll review a real event and draw some conclusions.  
Concepts covered will include:
Successful implementation of Product Development Teams
How to sell management on new concepts.
Different methods of Verification.
The importance of understanding workflow.
The inspection process itself.
Using inspection data to update the development and verification process as well as detect and fix defects.
Generating Run Charts in a knowledge worker environment.
An implementation approach for CQI of verification standards.
Acrobat Slides (1MB)


by Dr. Lawrence E. Day, PMP, CSQA
Dr. Day has over 30 years of experience in software and computing in the aerospace industry, including 17 years in engineering and computing management.  He has worked in every software development lifecycle phase as both an engineer and a manager.  He currently works in an IT organization, and has been in both military and commercial products organizations.  Lawrence earned a BSEE, an MBA in Technology/Engineering Management, and a ThD.  He is a PhD candidate in Information Systems Management.  He also holds the Certified Software Quality Analyst and Project Management Professional certifications.  Lawrence has been a presenter and participant at numerous conferences in the US, Latin America and Europe.  He works with a European firm for training and consulting. 

    Lawrence is married with four children, all no longer at home. Lawrence is an FAA Certified Flight Instructor rated for Single and Multi-Engine Land, Single Engine Sea, and Instrument. He is also an Advanced and Instrument Certified Ground Instructor. Lawrence gives flying lessons and has an aircraft leasing business. Lawrence and his wife, Kyung Ae, conduct monthly religious services at the King County Jail in Seattle, WA and publish a quarterly church teaching newsletter. Lawrence is also a Director in the International Fellowship of Christian Businessmen.


Email questions about SASQAG or this web site to webmaster at

Email questions about SASQAG or this web site to: webmaster at

Mailing Address:
Seattle Area Software Quality Assurance Group (SASQAG)
14201 SE Petrovitsky Rd
Suite A3-223
Renton, WA 98058