Friday, June 08, 2007

Lab life

Just two weeks in Mexico, I learnt the nuances and intricacies of a test lab.

Easy to memorize file names
The image file names will typically look like "ho_wth_efu_ckc_anso_meo_ne_n_ame_afil_el_iket_his_du_mbar_se.img" or "so_me_du_mba_me_ric_anid_io_tsid_ea.img"
Even though they look complicated, they are easy to remember with a better insight.

Follow the manual
Things don't just behave the way you want if the manual is NOT followed. Follow it like a dumb lapdog, don't ask questions. The manuals may sometimes be outrageously stupid "Before flashing the image, delete the sk_kj_hue_oi_jhs_mn_wer_as_oiu_qw_mn_pqow_jkq.img file, close the explorer window, re-open the explorer window, right click and do Undo delete".

Worse still "Open test manager, scratch your head thrice, select test suite and click run". You ridicule the manual and skip scratching, the consequence would be dire.

And since its written by anti-English Europeans the English can be hilarious at the same time perplexing too "The second of the first parameter, must be different than the first and second of the second parameter, within the first parameter".

You are lucky and propitious if the test cases start execution after restarting your machine five times. In a day the system would undergo, on an average, a few dozens of restarts for a couple of test runs. I've got accustomed to it, there is no better solution on earth than a slow and lousy RESTART.

Survival of fittest
Mortals on this planet fight for food, money, property or power, but we testers have interesting reasons to fight over. These scenes are not too uncommon in the labs

I wanna a telcel sim
Sorry I need it now
What the ...., u've been using it since morning
So what, my test case is failing, I shall not give
I'll report it to Edith
You can report it to even Edith's boss, I can't give
Let your test cases keep failing forever
Let them fail
You'll never get sim
Let them fail
$&*@ off
Let them fail

I'm feeling cold, set the temperature higher
You bloke, the test sets get burnt if you do so
I dont care, I'm feeling cold
Are you nuts, equipments cost a million
So what I'm feeling cold, I cant work
Get lost, I ain't gonna let you to do so
You better back off, you @#!(&#le
Come what may, you're not gonna hike it

A high pitched, piercing cry "Thisssss freakkkkkinggggg thingggggggg is workinggggg mannnnnnnnnnn" comes out glady out of Earnesto's larynx. Or a disgusted squeal of "F@#$@#$!@#kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk this damnnnnnn thing" flows fluently without a clue for senses.
We testers need such an exclamation of amazement for de-stressing our mind, body, soul and fingers.

With all this, life in a test lab is still exciting...I love the manual reading part the most.
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