Ian’s comments on Testuff

Wow!

I finally sat down today to write those Testuff emails I talked about and just as I was getting into the mood of doing that I spotted this post. Apparently Ian keeps track of whoever mentions his name and had quite a few things to say about our offer and our site. Thanks Ian!

Most of the comments about Testuff are dead on and we’re defeinitely going to address them, both on the website and in our application. Following are a couple of items I want to elaborate on.

Ian mentioned that it is unclear why he needed to download something:

It’s also a bit confusing which parts are online and why I’m downloading something. Clearing that up a bit would be useful.

We’re going to change the site to convey it better, but I do want to answer it right here for those who might have the same question. Testuff is a hybrid application with a rich GUI front end and a web-based backend. That means you have to download the client application to use it, but everything is stored online and can be shared between several people. That is similar to how services like iTunes and Chandler work.

Ian also said that we need to state clearly that Testuff integrated with existing bug trackers:

Your site makes it appear that the bugs are logged with you , though I found one random note that suggests it actually integrates with commercial bug trackers. This is a huge point, nobody wants to log bugs with you. You should prominently display the names of the bug trackers you support all over the place. That way when I come to your site I can see my bug trackers name and know you support it right away and that this improves my existing bug tracker not replaces it.

Yes, we are going to integrate with existing bug trackers, but we haven’t done that yet. That’s why there’s only a random note about it on the site and it’s not in H1 on the main page. We’re hard at work on Trac integration with Bugzilla and Fogbugz on our feature list for the coming weeks. The selling point of actually improving your existing bug tracker is a great spin. After all, everybody uses a bug tracker these days (even if it is a simple excel sheet) and having the video records of the bugs in it could be huge!

Our original concept for building Testuff was to create something akin to TestDirector, but lighter, simpler and more useful for small companies. Using what we know about testing and QA we built a tool you could manage your testing process with – create tests, run them, record the results, and see reports about the quality of your product. That feature list seems to strike a note with the larger companies that already have a team of testers in place who are looking for tools to imrpove their processes. Smaller companies and mISV on the other hand, which we’re eager to please, seem to have less interest in test managament and are more excited by a better way to reproduce bugs.

 

Testuff is a young service and is a work in progress. I am very eager to hear more comments and thoughts on the subject, especially the negative ones as you learn the most from those. I promise to address each and every one.

3 Comments on “Ian’s comments on Testuff”


By Ian. October 19th, 2007 at 17:18

Thanks for clearning some of that up. I see what you mean about how larger companies may view this differently. Even so what you may want to do is make it configurable (if possible in your hybrid setup) so that a large company could use an api you provide to send the video’s wherever they like. You could then have some pre-build api implementations for common bug trackers.

Also, sorry if I came off too harsh. When I provide feedback I tend to focus on what’s wrong and not as much on what’s right! Overall I think it’s a cool idea. We’re running into some testing headaches here already so this type of tool could be interesting as we continue to formalize our testing procedures especially if we bring in new testers.

By Jim. October 20th, 2007 at 20:34

FYI: I only knew there were links in this article because I originally viewed it in my feed reader. You’ve made links non-underlined and the same colour as normal text – don’t you want anybody to know they are there or something?

By gooli. October 20th, 2007 at 20:51

Thanks for pointing that out. I really didn’t notice that :)