Tester’s Day Out with Dr.Cem Kaner

Tester’s  Day Out with Dr.Cem Kaner

26th December 2009 is a special day for Weekend Testing.

Dr. Cem Kaner commented(http://enjoytesting.blogspot.com/2009/10/are-you-good-note-taker-experience.html?showComment=1261813928076#c1896279177781839897) on Ajay’s blog:

“I am flattered that you would spend an entire hour trying to work through a 6 minute lecture of mine. But if you’re going to spend a session on one of the BBST series, you might want to coordinate with me so that I can be available during your session to answer questions and (if you want) participate in arguments about the content”.

Dr.Cem gifted a 3 session series of challenges to testers.

What a great way to ring in the New Year at Weekend Testing? 9th January 2010 came rushing.

Ajay and I(Parimala Shankaraiah) decided to co-facilitate the session of 24+ testers. These days, it’s very encouraging to see 20+ testers in any single session. We got online on Skype at 2 pm IST (GMT +5.30) to discuss the technicalities of the session. Dr. Cem logged in to Skype and we exchanged greetings. At 3 pm IST, I started adding people to the conference on Skype. All went well until I heard a ‘Keek Keek’ noise from the background. Power Cut came crashing at my place! I immediately called Ajay and informed him to take over Skype session (praying there is no power cut at his end). Picked up my laptop and started running towards the nearest cyber café.  A few seconds later, I realized why a few people stared at me. My hair unkempt and my face confused to say the least. Never Mind! By the time I joined back, Ajay found a bug in Skype. My status showed to others in the conference as ‘typing’ though I was disconnected :). Ajay and I provided video information which they were busy downloading.

Highlights from the Conference

Few testers watched the video in streaming while a few downloaded the video. Some early birds watched the video, paused and started asking questions to Cem. Whoa! Questions were being fired like bullets from a machine gun. What was amazing about this session was that testers were not shy or intimidated this time around. This is the first time we witnessed testers asking questions so openly. Cem answered each and every question in high detail. Every line that he typed in was like ‘Words of Diamond’. Feel free to go through the Conference Transcript by clicking HERE in Q&A format .


We did not gauge the session sufficiently well. Firstly, we did not think about downloading the video in advance for people to use. Secondly, we expected them to download the video instead of watching it online while it was streaming. Thirdly, Dr.Cem messaged on Skype ‘I received a warning a few hours ago that the university servers might go down because of severe weather’. And to add to the existing woes, we had a lot of latecomers for the session. In any session if all goes well, facilitators at WT get worried. If things break from the beginning like they happened above, then we think that all goes well. At the end of every session, we note down the learnings and ensure not to repeat same mistakes. In the immediate next session, we face different kinds of challengesJ. Facilitating is an art!

Suggestions are welcome

What makes Weekend Testing a grand success? It is YOU. Yes, it’s YOU. We had a lot of testers suggest better ways to handling hiccups during the session so far. We would like to thank everyone for the tremendous support and encouragement. Next time, you come across Weekend Testing, do remember that ‘Weekend Testing is a testing initiative by testers, for testers and to testers’. It’s for you, so you tell us what you would want us to change to facilitate better and help you test better.

We have a lot of people telling us ‘if only it was on weekdays, we could have participated’. We do not want to eat up on your time during office hours on weekdays. That is solely the reason to keep these sessions on Weekends. If you have the passion to test, learn and contribute, you would break all barriers. Isn’t it?

Did you miss talking to Dr. Cem? Don’t you worry. Dr. Cem has gifted a 3 session series to Weekend Testing. What just finished was session1. We have 2 more sessions to come. Are you up for the challenge?

Watch this space for further details,

Happy Testing,

Parimala Shankaraiah

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