Personal Update

It’s been awhile since I wrote something. Truth be told, I’ve missed the sound of my fingers typing on the keyboard, the smooth movements, the ideas flowing through my head while I’m typing. What has been stopping me then? A lack of motivation for one, but also no ideas for a good blog post. The focus of my blog has shifted to testing during the last 2 to 3 years, so it feels different now to write about something not test related. Like that isn’t allowed anymore, but it’s my own website! Craziness. The tagline is even “Maaike’s blog on testing, thinking, and life”. So, this will be about ‘thinking’ and ‘life’. Continue reading

A distributed mob testing session


After I had facilitated a distributed Exploratory Testing workshop, that same client asked me to help them out some more and expand on the topic. I thought it would be a good idea to try out a distributed mob testing session to help them. It would have the added benefit of showing them how effective testing with a group can be. My first experience with mob testing was with Maaret Pyhäjärvi back in October 2016, so I learned from one of the best! I learned a lot by observing how she gave the gave tips and which questions she asked to help the group progress.

In my last post, I mentioned some difficulties with the distributed part of the workshop when it came to doing exercises that the participants had to do alone. I had no way to keep tabs on how they were doing. Therefore, I opted to do everything as a group this time. The workshop was 100% distributed this time, since I did it from the comfort of my own home (the first time I had 2 people physically present with me). Continue reading

A Distributed Exploratory Test Workshop


I had the honour of doing my first ever distributed work. So far, I had managed to avoid it. That was mainly by accident, or luck, depending on how you look at it. My first experience with distributed working was a deep dive, because instead of a simple meeting I had to give a workshop on Exploratory Testing. Most of the participants were in another country, somewhere at the other side of Europe, while I was in Amsterdam with 2 other people present.

Did it work? Continue reading

Best Practice?

A post about best practices? Bitch, please.

I might get a tad obnoxious in this post. If that ain’t your thing, I warned you now!

Some time ago, I witnessed my personal record of “best practices”. I was attending a presentation where these cursed words were thrown around carelessly. I counted at least 10 of them (DING DING DING)! It seemed like I was the only one being annoyed by the use of these words, the presenters themselves didn’t seem aware of what they were saying. That’s an assumption, but in the same presentation they also said the reasonable words “it depends”, so that’s why I think they weren’t aware. That made me quite confused. I tried to engage in discussion to see if they were aware of these contradictory statements “best practice” versus “it depends”, but I was met with confusion and I was probably perceived as that person (the annoying person that corrects others, in this context). Continue reading

TestBash NL 2017 Conference Day Live Blog

A TestBash conference in my own hometown, that is like a dream come true! Going there on my bike, super nice. I’ll try to live blog the whole conference day, hope it’ll be useful to you.

Technically, this is already the second day of TestBash NL 2017. Yesterday we had a day filled with workshops. In the morning, Cirilo and I gave a workshop on Specification by Example. Our group was very involved, so we had a great time.

After lunch, I chose to go to Gitte’s workshop on finding your courage. That was an amazing afternoon! A great serendipity moment as well, because this was just what I needed. I cannot tell you what was discussed in the group, but it was really special to hear what personal stories people had to share. What we did discuss that can be shared publicly is the question: ’what is courage’. We came to the conclusion that it’s a very personal thing. What is a courageous act for someone else, can be a piece of cake for you. And most courageous acts require you to go out of your comfort zone. You have to be motivated to do that! If you do courageous acts only for someone else, you risk going too far of you comfort zone into the ‘danger zone’. So, take baby steps and try to find a safe space to do new things that are (a bit) scary for you. Continue reading