WeTest Interactive Workshop: Trial by Reason - Challenge the logic!

  • May 8, 2014 · 5:30 PM
  • This location is shown only to members

A lot of misinformation seems to circulate about testing - about what exactly our role in a project is, how testing should (or shouldn't) be done, or why it's done at all. This session will be about ways to tackle the tricky situations in which these misinformed ideas arise to confront us: how to respond with accuracy and tact; how to educate people by providing the information they may need to think about testing in a more beneficial way. Come to this workshop with a mind ready to challenge and change thinking - both your own and others'.  

JOSHUA RAINE has been a tester with Statistics New Zealand for 2 and a half years, but has been testing for what seems to be his whole life. His experience has generally been in internal facing Agile projects, but not exclusively. 


Will there be food and drink?

Yes. This workshop is free of charge thanks to sponsorship from Assurity and includes pizza, beer and non-alcoholic beverages.

What time does it finish?

Doors open from 5.15pm. The first session runs 5.45pm - 6.45pm, then a 15 minute break for pizza, followed by a second session from 7pm - 8pm.

How do I attend?

RSVP for the event. Numbers are limited to the first 20 participants, but if you're keen please add yourself to the waiting list. We often get a big waiting list that disappears closer to the time, as attendees drop out due to schedule conflicts or illness. Testers of all experience levels welcome.

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  • Jane B.

    Thank you, really enjoyed the session

    1 · May 9

  • Craig M.

    I also loved the use of the Socratic method. Your simple explanation also closed a gap in my understanding of this method. A really we'll put together workshop. Thanks.

    May 9

  • Craig M.

    Really enjoyed this session. You did a great job of presenting some challenging situations we can find ourselves in and very helpful and practical techniques to identify the real motivations behind the questions.

    1 · May 9

  • Joshua R.

    Hey folks, here are some quick notes of what was discussed. I haven't put together anything formal (yet?), so if you want to talk more, feel free to get in touch, I'll leave contact details at the end.

    Techniques that we learned and used during the session:

    - Breaking down a statement: Taking a sentance apart into it's component pieces can help you to understand it better.
    - Semantics: What could each of these words mean? What could this person be trying to say, as opposed to what I assume they mean?
    - Abstractions: An abstraction is something simple that represents something more complex. Everything is subjective, and everything is an abstraction, even language. Whenever you find an abstraction, make sure that it's not translating the information inaccurately.
    - Construct Validity: What format is the speaker expecting a response in? How would they want the response measured?

    2 · May 9

    • Joshua R.

      - Question Validity: Is the statement from the interlocuter not actually what they want? Is there a missing assumption here? What is the question they actually want answered?
      - Inattentional Blindness: Are we focusing so much on something that we're excluding other things from our vision? For bonus points, look up the terms Framing and Anchoring.
      - Selection Bias: We can get the wrong conclusions if we misapply our data. If our data is selected from a bad source (say, we only ever get our answers from one specific group of people rather than a broad range of sources) then we may generate the wrong picture.

      May 9

    • Joshua R.

      - Confirmation Bias: We are liable to look at data and build a picture that matches what we already believe. What else could this mean? What else would fit this picture?
      - False Dichotomy: When someone presents you with a limited list of options, look for a third option. There is always a third option (it just may not be a good one).
      - Unstated Enthymeme: As part of conversation, people exclude steps that they consider obvious. Sometimes these unstated steps aren't obvious, and sometimes they are wrong. Break down the chain of logic to find out what is actually being said.
      - Socratic Questioning: Practice this brilliant technique. It will serve you well, just don't drink the hemlock. [masked]

      @raine_check

      May 9

  • Joanne S.

    As a first timer I was a bit nervous however all the people there were very friendly. It didn't take long to settle down. I really enjoyed the workshop, I got a lot out of it.

    2 · May 9

    • A former member
      A former member

      As another first timer, I have to agree, I wasn't expecting such an interactive session!

      2 · May 9

    • Dave

      Slightly different from how normally run it. But all are unreactive with lots of discussion. The collective knowledge of the room rather than the knowledge of just the talking head at the front.

      2 · May 9

  • Rupert B.

    Great session, very thought provoking. Enjoyed to interactive nature of it.

    2 · May 9

  • Katrina C.

    Note: This is an encore and extension of the highly-rated WeTest Weekend Workshop session of the same name that was presented by Joshua in November 2013.

    2 · March 21, 2014

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    Meeting location & refreshments

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