CITCON Sydney 2007 curiousities

Given I ran a session on agile retrospectives, I guess I should do my personal mini-review…

NOT QUITE TO PLAN: The mixed-up seating survey/surveyer
The guy in the planning session who did the ‘Hands up if you are sitting next to a colleague’ survey, got lots of hands (including the Brisbane block in the corner) then encouraged people to mix. He did it again in the wrapup session and got very few hands, but his was one! Mild muttered protestations of “he sat next to me”..

PLUS: open space conferences
Amazing experience, 25 group generated workshops/discussions, enthusiastic people and a buzz all day, lots of takeaways even a good blogs list. Here’s hoping for many more in Australasia….

MINUS: People incorrectly calling testing QA
For many years, system testers fought to stop people using the term “QA” to describe testing. Just when I thought we’d won the fight, all these folk are talking about QA. Arrghhh! QA takes a set process, and looks at whether people are following the process properly. It’s audit, not testing! Looks like I’ve already lost this one!!

OOPS: Sydney Fried Wifi
Comedy of errors has someone plug in PJ’s US wired wifi into the Oz power grid… Sizzle then nofi.

VENUE: the Balcony Lounge
I had three sessions there, just enouigh natural light, and views of the trees across the road in Hyde Park. That’s a conference room! Update: here’s a picture

HUH: Google major sponsor but no Google attendees?
Thank you Google for lunch, etc and event sponsorship, but the only thing representing Google on the ground was the logo on the t-shirt. The Oz Googleplex is in Sydney, so this was on their home turf. They would have loved it!

TIP: Filling in a lull during technical setup
During the functional tools session, 40 or so people, waiting for someone to connect their laptop to the datashow for a demo, what to do? I ran a impromptu audience survey of their main tools. Short, sharp and good value add. Selenium in many flavors came first by a long way. Results are here in a photographic form ….. Half or nothing or TBC meant it was mentioned but not used (yet).

TAKEAWAY: Two quality flavors:Product and code

Jeff F (try to say that quickly) describing the difference between delivery (what trad dev focussed on) and design (that TDD keeps simple to allow easy maintenance) as product quality and code quality. Much more developer friendly concept and less abstract.

NEXT TIME: Back In Sydney?
I ran a quick survey during the wrapup on Sydney for the next CITCON, and it seemed to be a majority choice. Main reason – Central (its location in Australia that is, not the main Sydney railway station!)

VALUE ADD: With a nimble twist
I’ve started a regional email list for australasian functional testers to build on the energy of CITCON.

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