I care about my community, so I like to give back in different ways including organizing meetups and conferences, reviewing conference proposals, facilitating workshops, speaking, writing, podcasting, and live-tweeting events related to agile, software, testing, and development.
Where I’ve been lately:
Dec 2021 – Present
“positioned to help girls develop important STEM competencies they need to become the next generation of female leaders – and to change the world in big and small ways!”
Talk with your peers that are actively working on building tools, providing services and architecting frameworks to assist and build a DevOps community; and companies who run their organizations using Agile and DevOps concepts.
(formerly Software Testing Club Atlanta)
Our first Meetup in Atlanta, GA took place on October 15th. I ran a Lean Coffee session of 15 attendees and acted as community manager for several people in the virtual audience through a GoToWebinar provided by our host VersionOne as well as through social media channels, including Twitter and Google+. Read more about our successful experiment here. Social media pages for STC ATL are on Software Testing Club, Facebook, Google+, and LinkedIn.
Returning to the Georgia Aquarium April of 2022
Devopsdays is a worldwide series of technical conferences covering topics of software development, IT infrastructure operations, and the intersection between them. Each event is run by volunteers from the local area.
Event format: Morning consists of half hour talks and 5 minute Ignite talks. Afternoon consists of open space sessions co-developed by attendees, often working through content from the morning’s talks.
While there are other tech conferences in Atlanta, we’re one of the few that’s community-led, which means none of the organizers make any money off of devopsdays Atlanta. We’re able to keep our ticket prices at cost and give a lot of tickets away because we can’t do anything with any of the money but try to build upon the diverse and inclusive Atlanta community. – Ecology Computing
So You Want to Shift Right Over into DevOps? atomic talk
As a career software tester, I heard rumors DevOps culture would put me out of a job, so I took a job testing for a DevOps team. Although I learned a lot working on integrating orchestration and workitem tracking software, I decided to go even further right to take on DevOps work myself as a site reliability engineer. Going into the new role could have been intimidating, but I made it exciting with my approach to learning. Shifting right over into DevOps gave me a new way to apply my testing skills. If you’re considering this career move, listen to my session and let’s catch up afterward to compare strategies!
- Examine your portable skills
- Sort through process and role differences
- Strategize your approach to new challenges
- Apply your testing mindset in support of DevOps
The TestFlix 2021 global virtual stage presents atomic talks from 100 testers and test enthusiasts around the world. Atomic talks by definition are meant to be small, yet powerful with crisp and clear takeaways.
Co-facilitator for Steve Holyer’s Continuous Agile Chartering
Continuous Agile Chartering is a “new” Agile Practice for super-charging your enterprise’s Agile journey. Continuous Agile Chartering promotes self-organisation. It will connect stakeholders with developers, and it will help you optimise your planning. In this hand-on workshop, I will introduce you to this “new” Agile Practice. I’ll invite you to try it out.
This workshop is for facilitators, team coaches and product owners. It’s for curious enterprise leaders and development managers. I also invite the technical developers. This practice must work for you, and we must include you as we inspect and adapt.
- Describe the three integrated focus areas for any Agile Chartering event (from the book Liftoff by Larsen and Nies).
- Identify the scope of your planning horizons.
- Explain how focus on each area of an agile charter can improve self-organisation and agility at every planning horizon (including the daily standup).
- Use the charter-mat to place new, continuous focus on Purpose, Alignment, and Context in order to make a plan for your Agile discovery and delivery.
- Create new continuous engagement with your sponsors in a way that leads to better outcomes for everyone.
- Find and name varied and appropriate facilitation activities you can use for your planning events (both in the room and in a virtual setting)
Social media staff
This year has forced us to re-evaluate and put plans on hold. The pandemic and other disasters have had disparate impacts geographically and demographically. Some of us are struggling with loss. Many of us are carrying new burdens. In one way or another, we are forever changed and there’s no going back to “normal.” Our Women in Agile community is reaching out globally in 2021 to bring us all back together.
Through our first five years we’ve been inspired and found career and personal growth together, guided by conference themes — Inform, Empower, Expand, Activate!, Adapt — and now in our sixth year we take time to reflect and Renew.
Our familiar format will be presented live online, and as we have in the past, we’ll kick off a week of agile festivities by meeting on the Sunday before the start of Agile2021.
Coaching Exploratory Testing
Coaching agile teams comes with many challenges – often centered around delivery. Agile doesn’t have room for manual testing – or at least you’re going to hear that from some agile team members! There’s a widespread misconception that manual testing is waste. As a result, tester team members often feel increased scrutiny during an agile transformation, where testing occurs at the intersection of speed and quality.
People exploring systems can be your best defense against unknown problems and your greatest way of finding unexpected opportunities. While automation is well adapted for repeating the same thing over and over again, human beings are great at doing things differently. If you’re not learning when you’re testing, you’re doing it wrong!
Doing is not enough! We need to think during our review and examination processes to improve outcomes. How do we design manual exploration to provide value in today’s fast-moving development culture?
Coaches attending this workshop experience the full exploratory testing charter lifecycle hands-on. Leave empowered to help traditional testers transition to testing subject matter experts and testing coaches!
- Support tester team members as they transition to agile and adopt value-add practices of modern testing.
- Structuring manual exploratory testing for transparency
- Charter guidance during test execution
- Outcomes of exploratory testing
- Value delivery through debrief of testing session
Chaos Engineering, The Testing Show podcast
Many of us are familiar with the idea of negative testing, where we feed bad data or inputs to a program or application to see how it behaves. That works for a program or an app but how about an entire infrastructure? A discipline that has come to be known as Chaos Engineering is where this level of “testing” comes into play. Intriguing but what is “Chaos Engineering?”
Claire Moss joins Matt Heusser and Michael Larsen to discuss the good, bad, ugly, and just plain odd aspects of a discipline that is not readily understood but bears a resemblance to Exploratory Testing. It is also available to any organization that wants to implement it, provided they are ready and willing to go down a rabbit hole or ten.
Time To Good DX
We often hear to focus on the customer, but what do you do when your customers are your coworkers? Developers are the largest group of individual contributors in software teams. It’s about time the developer experience (DX) got the focus it deserves! Devs are users, too! Wouldn’t it be great if your user needs were met?
For this episode of The Testing Show, Matt and Michael step back and invite Elle Gee, Jessica Ingrassellino, Rachel Kibler, Claire Moss, and Lihi Segev to share and discuss their own journeys in the world of technology and the various and varied experiences they have had and highlight areas that have been successes in varied places like Australia, Israel and the U.S., as well as areas where we as an industry can do better.
Everything You Wanted To Know About DevOps But Were Afraid To Ask
As a career software tester, I’ve heard rumors DevOps culture will put me out of a job, so I took a job testing for a DevOps team. I’m new to DevOps, but aren’t we all? What matters most is our teams’ intentional decisions to grow our DevOps practices along with our development community.
Join me as I share my experiences blending disciplines, companies, levels of experience, and differing expectations as a member of efficient and effective delivery teams. I’ll describe common cultural and interpersonal problems I experienced while transforming a cross-functional agile team dogfooding a DevOps implementation.
Whether you’re into development, operations, testing, customer support, or product ownership, you’ll leave with concrete strategies for improving your DevOps working relationships to keep the technology running smoothly. People factors strongly affect your DevOps technical outcomes, so optimizing your flow includes improving your people practices.
Don’t feel afraid to ask about DevOps anymore!
It’s a MAD world! Contract Testing can help!
APIs as products and microservices as a design pattern have become our day-to-day reality.
With more moving parts comes more complexity and a greater need for understanding. Developers and Product Managers need early warning signs that deployment is a bad idea.
Enter contract testing. (No, not the “contract negotiation” mentioned in the Agile Manifesto…)
Provider teams building API products collaborate with the consumer teams who are their customers to determine information needs. This negotiation works out in various ways that result in interface agreements between the teams.
Join Claire for an interactive exploration of contract testing as a feedback technique. Enable greater focus on the individuals and interactions. Make responding to the changes of this MAD world easier!
Program committee, social media/live-tweeting
Theme: “Just Keep Swimming”
We have the pleasure of co-hosting this 3-track event with the 1st Map Camp outside of the UK & an inaugural serverlessdays Atlanta at The Georgia Aquarium.
Time to Good DX
We often hear focus on the customer, but what do you do when you customers are your coworkers? Developers are the largest group of individual contributors in software teams. It’s about time Developer Experience (DX) got the focus it deserves! Devs are users, too! Wouldn’t it be great if your user needs were met?
Safe to Fail Organizations
In the last of our episodes recorded at Agile 2018, our host James Gifford is joined by guests Claire Moss, Erika Lenz, Andy Cleff, and Chris Murman where they discuss “safe to fail” organizations; what have they experienced, what works/what doesn’t, and how can organizations change to adopt this way of thinking. Enjoy!
Praxisflow video podcast
I got to sit out of frame and hear Claire Moss talk about contracts and pacts. I’ve heard of these before, but she highlighted multiple nuances that I wasn’t aware of. Definitely provided additional context for my thoughts on the boundary between Complicated and Complex. You can find the discussion on Twitter. – Tristan Slominski, Map/Serverless/DevOps DaysATL 2019 Things Learned
Conferences and Conferring
With everyone heading off to conferences hither and yon, we dedicated a show to the topic. Anna Royzman (Test Masters Academy), Claire Moss (DevOpsDays) and Mike Lyles (Software Test Professionals) join us as guests in their capacity as conference organizers, speakers and attendees (not necessarily in that order) to riff on Conferences and Conferring with Matthew Heusser, Michael Larsen and Perze Ababa. Want to know where to go, what format to take part in or if you want to try your hand at speaking/presenting? We’ve got something for all those bases!
Everything You Wanted To Know About DevOps But Were Afraid To Ask
Agile2018 Testing & Quality Track (program committee)
Getting the Job Done: Categorizing vs Tagging
Refactoring Test Collaboration
Beyond Waste: Exploratory Testing Charters in Action
Bryan & Bill’s Three-Ring Design Circus (mob programming facilitator)
Program committee, social media/live-tweeting
Blow your Mind! Mind-map automation in NodeJS
Everything You Wanted to Know About DevOps But Were Afraid to Ask
What happens when you get a handful of Agilists together and ask them random questions on the fly? A lot of fun – and insights. Who’s the better ScrumMaster: Batman or Wonder Woman? What drink makes for the best retrospectives? What one piece of advice would you offer a Product Owner? Listen in and see how you stack up with our panel – Neville Poole, Chris Murman and Claire Moss. Hosted by Howard Sublett.
A Day in the Life of an Automation Engineer (assisted Angie Jones with her automation workshop)
Blow Your Mind!: Automation with NodeJS
A Hands-On Introduction to Exploratory Testing
Echoes of xP
Walk Without Rhythm (team member)
2016 workshop: A Hands-On Introduction to Exploratory Testing
2016 workshop: Intentional Learning – Map a Successful Strategy
2014, 2015, 2016: Program Chair, Board member, Social media/live-tweeting
Atlanta’s first “locally sourced” software testing conference
STAC was started by a group of testers that wanted to create the conference they’ve collectively always wanted to attend. We envisioned a forum for local testers to not only listen to keynotes from industry heavyweights, but that also grows our local testing community.
Attendees will get up-to-date knowledge and experience-based practices for software testing and what’s happening around the world, while networking with local, like-minded testers.
While our conference is for the Atlanta testing community, we invite any and all testers interested in attending to join us.
Intentional Learning – Map a Successful Strategy
A Hands-On Introduction to Exploratory Testing
The Testing Show podcast – Real Work vs Bureaucratic Silliness
Testing in the Pub podcast – Episode 32: Intentional Learning
Agency vs Doing What You’re Told
My first full day workshop, Value for People
Hey there, tester. You deliver a lot of value in your work life. Who defines this value? Who receives this value?
In this course, we’ll work our way out from you at the center of value delivery to the external customers who use the software you test.
We’ll explore the ways you deliver value to:
Your testing team
Your product team
Your end user/external customer
Your testing community
How do we get there? We wrestle with our current information and assumptions together through interaction with both other classmates and the instructor. This is a whole class learning experience.
On staff as the social media community manager.
The Association for Software Testing is pleased to announce its ninth annual conference, CAST 2014 “The Art and Science of Testing”, to be held in New York, NY, August 11-13.To some, software testing is an outgrowth of engineering, mathematics and physics, while to others, testing is an exploration of psychology, philosophy or sociology. At CAST 2014, conference speakers will share their stories and experiences surrounding software testing, whether bound by rules and laws of science and experimentation, or expressed through creativity, imagination, and artistry.
Led a session on exploratory environments.
At Test Retreat, you’ll find something different. A chance to connect with old friends, make new ones, and build the test experience you really need. It’s not a conference … it is a test retreat.
Bring together the best and brightest minds in Software Testing and perhaps a few from the overall process of software (and value!) delivery.
We’ll start Saturday’s “Main Event” by organizing our thoughts ideas on new ideas — how to do testing better, how to exlain it, manage it, and maybe even measuring it. You might call this “thought leadership.” Our facilitator, Matt Barcomb, will help organize interests and ideas, then we’ll break into small groups to discuss, then present on our ideas. After a short break for lunch we’ll resume in the afternoon in open space format, gathering a list of proposals for topics. After proposals, the group will create the schedule together, based on interest.
In other words, the attendees will build the schedule they want, in real time, based on what we want to talk about now.
The day ends with a retrospective to collect our learnings.
We put the best people in the field in one room – people doing software testing, test coaching, and helping others do it, along with a few experts from related disciplines.
The format combines a workshop with just enough structure with plenty of unstructured, informal time. Or bring your own ideas for what to do Sunday!
We will share our stories, approaches, and ideas about testing
We will invent and experiment with new testing and coaching practices
It may involve discussing new, fundamental roles for testers and leaders of testers
We will discuss, document, and create new ways to influence the state of the practice, as well as projects to move things forward
How often do you get a chance to sit back and envision your next few years, surrounded by colleagues that can encourage you and offer realistic feedback?
- Whole Team Testing
Presented at Agile2014
Sometimes there just isn’t enough testing time for all the testing we’d like to do as a team. For those testers stuck in a phased approach, testing can end up feeling like a bottleneck in the system, with testers constantly asking for more time or more help. Having experienced that team dynamic, I know that I can’t do all of this testing alone and I wouldn’t want to. Whole team testing reduces the time waiting for feedback and improves communication to deliver customer value sooner.
So let’s say you live in this utopia of collaboration. Everybody tests! The unparalleled beauty of your shared understanding astounds everyone and satisfies your clients. You get more feedback earlier and from different perspectives. Okay, now I envy you. When can I move in? Or I guess I could just build my own little utopia right here. But where do I start?
During this session, we will draw upon the collective wisdom of the attendees to compare notes on challenges and solutions that we have experienced as well as walking through a case study of whole team testing.
Whole team testing: because teams who own testing have more confidence in the customer value of their results
- Refactoring Test Collaboration
Presented at Agile2014
Collective ownership for testing starts with understanding testing. Rework your team dynamics to evolve past duplication and improve performance through whole team testing. Take home practical patterns for improving your team’s collaboration on testing. Because teams who own testing have more confidence in the customer value of their results.
As the Pragmatic Programmers say, “refactoring is an activity that needs to be undertaken slowly, deliberately, and carefully,” so how do we begin?
In this session, we will experience the complex interactions of an agile team focused on demonstrating customer value by answering a series a questions:
Where do testers get their ideas?
How are you planning to accomplish this proposed testing, tester?
Why not automate all the things?
Who is going to do this manual testing and how does it work?
How do we know whether we’re testing the right things?
Build your own list of TODOs from these various practical collaboration approaches and begin deduping your team’s testing for a better first day back at the office.
The theme for CAST 2013 is “Old Lessons applied and new lessons learned: advancing the practice and building a foundation for the future.” What we learn from our experiences helps shape us as human beings. What we learn from the experiences of others can give us new insight and new perspectives.The industry we work in is multifaceted and the technologies we work with are rapidly changing. Some testing truisms stand up over time. Some fall into obsolescence as others rise to take their place.
At this year’s conference speakers will share with you the lessons that they have learned in Software Testing, as well as how these lessons influence the way that we approach testing both now and in the future. These sessions will be filled with real-world experiences, stories, thoughts, observations, and demonstrations.
Sessions where I contributed:
- My Walking skeletons, Butterflies and Islands – an agile testing journey session
- Live-tweeting lots of different sessions
A chance to connect with old friends, make new ones, and build the test experience you really need. It’s not a conference … it is a test retreat. Every attendee will sign up on the conference wiki, and list what they want to talk about — their own professional development plan, along with ideas on how we can influence the state of testing as it is practiced. Each attendee should expect to offer at least one session to host. Hosts can lead discussion, present, or facilitate … a full-day open space conference, with a short theme of “Deliberate Practice.” The longer theme is “Advancing And Influencing the Craft while growing personally and professionally.” After gathering a list of proposals, the group will conduct a rapid vote, called a dotting exercise, then create the schedule based on interest. In other words, the attendees will build the schedule they want, in real time, based on our interests. The format combines a workshop with Just Enough Structure with plenty of unstructured, informal time. The goal of this meeting is to impact the practice of testing while growing professionally. We expect to leave with a half-dozen projects. No just “project ideas”, but projects, actively underway, with the opportunity to impact the test community in a wildly positive way. Sessions where I contributed:
Each year Agile Alliance brings together attendees, speakers, authors, luminaries, and industry analysts from around the world in a one-of-a-kind conference. The Conference is considered the premier Agile event of the year, and provides a week-long opportunity to engage in wide-open interaction, collaboration and sharing of ideas with peers and colleagues within the global Agile community. Teams, managers, executives, developers and practitioners across all disciplines and levels of experience will be well-served by this week-long event. In 2013, 1780 Agilists from 38 countries converged to learn, share, and collaborate while exploring Agile approaches, methods, technologies, tools, leadership principles, management philosophies and processes, plus the latest in policies, theories and research. Sessions where I contributed:
- Matt Heusser’s After Twelve Years of Agile-Testing: How Did We Get Here and What Do We Know? session, co-facilitating the hands-on exploratory testing and automation exercise
- My Big Visible Testing session, which was my first full-length presentation at a conference along with a slide deck, formal paper, and references. See full list of Experience Reports here.
- Matt Heusser’s and my A Hands-On Introduction to Exploratory Testing workshop
Testing & Quality Assurance Track program committee/track reviewer
Atlanta Scrum Users Group
Specification By Example (co-presenter with Andrew Fuqua)
Big Visible Testing
Agile Atlanta user group
Office tour – Daxko
PMI Atlanta Chapter, Agile Interest Group
UX in Agile: How one team is making it work (panelist)
Coaching Non-testers through Paired Exploratory Testing
This Week in Software Testing (TWiST) podcast: Exploratory vs. Automation
Agile Testing Days US blog:
Women Testers magazine: Not Invented Here: Trial and Error in Adapting Practices
More Agile Testing – contributor
StickyMinds – Building Better Bug Reports
Tea-time with Testers: All the World’s a Stage [PDF]
This Week in Software Testing (TWiST) podcast – Getting Hired as a Tester
Citations of my work
These Six DevOps Principles Underpin What DevOps Is – Yevhen Duma
Gamification for Software Test Teams – Trevor Atkins
Organizational Management course – Panjab University School of Open Learning
125 Awesome Testers You Should Keep Your Eye on Always – Agile Testing Days
200 Testers to Follow on Twitter – Testing Circus
Testing Resources – Chris Glättli
Ada Lovelace Day 2013 – Meg Bear