Getting more with Weekend Testing (part 2)

Posted by Albert Gareev on Jan 16, 2015 | Categories: WTAmericasWTToronto

Disclaimer: my views, expressed in these series, not necessarily reflect views of all Weekend Testing facilitators and instructors.

Yesterday, I wrote about all the positive outcomes from Weekend Testing.
Today’s post is about some issues and challenges we’ve been facing. Actually, when I checked, I wrote about some of them, too – quite a few years ago.

Approaching tasks with bigger than “simple” complexity. A vague definition, yes, but think of it as something like a “one-step”, or “one-problem”, or “one-concept” thing. The 2 hours format dictates that. So for bigger tasks it’s either focusing on one small piece or an introduction.

– Absence of a reliable medium and continuity is the main issue here. Reference to the progress achieved would have enabled tackling bigger problems piece by piece.

Transparency of the process and visibility of results. If you have not participated in the session it’s unlikely you can learn the same what participants learnt. Chat transcript is of little help, and experience reports are not always available. It’s even worse with testing results. Even though some bug reports are available, the whole everything that was learnt through exploration of the product is getting lost.

– Not much to showcase. Not so much to refer to from LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. How to demonstrate one’s engagement and contribution?

– Those were important matters in 2011, and now they are even more important. True professionals are certified by their work.

Teamwork scale. Weekend Testing sessions are facilitated but not organized. Participants have all the freedom of engagement on the same mission: some stay in a passive observer role and some actively pursue the mission. Typically, everybody acts on their own, with some exception of paired testing. All this is perfect for learning missions, where duplication of effort brings a benefit of diversity. However, for a product testing, exploring different areas and sharing the information learnt would mean a team work

– In fact, scale issue exists in all aspects: testing breadth and depth, communication, time.

On top of that, we have administrative overhead. Design and preparation of a session take a lot of facilitator’s time already. But this is fun. Parsing chat logs and participants’ reports takes even more time, and it’s not exactly fun.


Addressing these problems would enable getting even more with Weekend Testing. Stay tuned. And don’t forget to sign up to Weekend Testing Toronto Meetup.

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported
This work by Albert Gareev is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported.