Zen and the Art of Testing Web Sites

Testing web sites is not hard. It’s primarily a combination of common sense and some basic comprehension about how web sites work.

In fact the first thing you should do with a web page is not test at all.  Don’t touch the mouse or the keyboard, just look at what the first page presents for you eyes.  What do you see?

  • Does it look right?
  • Does it make sense?
  • Does it present information cleanly?
  • Does it give you any options to view information?
  • Does it give you any actions to take on that information?

What are you answers? Can you qualify them? Can you back those answers with any data to make your point?

Excellent!  You’re testing without testing.

Now, what do you not see?

  • Is there something obvious that’s missing?
  • Are you expecting to see something that’s not on the screen?
  • Does the information imply a conclusion of some sort?
  • Do you want to take an action but cannot see how to do it?

What are you answers? Can you qualify them? Can you back those answers with any data to make your point?

Excellent!  You’re testing without testing.

Intuition, specifically human intuition, is one of the most important skills that are absolutely required by any decent tester worth their salt.  Without it, you cannot see what is right in front of you and you cannot see what’s missing.  Thoughtful contemplation of what it is you are about to do is as important as doing anything at all. And, inducing your mind into a mode of consciousness that allows for the above is as important as memorizing obscure command line kung fu moves.

So, remember: in order to test, do not test.

zen2

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