I became aware of James Bach through the Google Techtalk “Becoming a Software Testing Expert”. Then I quickly got his book “Lessons Learned in Software Testing”.
In this book Bach presents with his colleagues Cem Kaner and Bret Pettichord 293 tips and tricks (“lessons”) from the test practice.
Divided into 10 chapters, this book covers almost every aspect that can be encountered in daily SW test work.
Similar to Rework, the strength of this book lies in the small, self-contained chapters. You can individually rate and apply each tip individually or not. The authors are advocates of the context-based test strategy; So there is no all-encompassing concept / strategy that works for every kind of SW product.
Therefore, the recommendations are sometimes deliberately contradictory, e.g. whether SW tests according to IEEE 829 should be documented or not. Just as a doctor only makes a diagnosis after a detailed medical history and then treats the patient, “lessons” are tools that are only to be used after a detailed analysis of the situation (industry, company, team, project, product).
At the beginning of this analysis, the tester must scrutinize himself and his mission in the development process. Insights such as that you can never find all the mistakes and therefore never completely test, sound obvious, but should always be kept in mind to get your own motivation.
The tester does not verify that the product is working, but shows that the product has a defect at a certain point. Word!
The fact that the tester primarily supports or relieves the developers is an idea that is far too rarely taken into account in practice. Test departments are often perceived as opponents rather than as partners.
The following chapters cover the handling of test techniques, bug reports, automated tests, test documentation, the exchange with the developers, as well as the management of the own test team.
The conclusion of the book are the two topics career in SW-test and creation of a test strategy.
If you are looking for a strict roadmap that simply has to be implemented one-to-one to ensure software quality, you will not find it here. On the other hand, if you are looking for suggestions and critical questions to continuously improve yourself and your work, you will find enough material in this book to deal with it for several weeks to months.