Test Retreat

Welcome to the homepage of Kris Corbus

Archive for the tag “software testing”

Real Time Online Training With Kids

Just like everybody else, I am at home and trying to work. Why trying? Because I have my husband here and my three kids, and everyone of them has different reactions to physical distancing. We try to go for a walk each day, but… let’s be honest – we fail, just because we hate the idea of limitations. Some of us suffer a lot, because they can not do their favourite thing, like gliding, canoeing, graffiti, meeting with friends or going to school, and then they make me suffer by complaining and whining. I am doing my best, but I am only a human!  Talking about school… – they send us tasks and homework every single hour!!! I am overacting, but this makes me so angry! I was looking forward to homeschooling my kids (in Germany it is forbidden), but this is not homeschooling – we cannot choose the topics, depth of it nor speed. 

I am in the middle of all this – calming down others and myself, helping with school stuff, cooking and yes – working. Why am I telling you all of this? 

Because of all this craziness I cannot work more then 4-5 h/day and any time anyone can interrupt me with something (signs don’t help, angry faces don’t help as well). So I thought – I am not alone in this! The whole world is physically distancing, so there could be people, who still want to use time and learn something, but have similar challenges to mine. So the idea was born – I am offering trainings in agile (Agile Testing for Whole Team), software testing (ISTQB FL) and requirements (IREB) for people, who take care of somebody, but still can arrange to study real time, in small groups in 1-1,5h sessions, totally 4-5h/day. If it was usually a 3-day training, which is around 20 h, then we will stretch it over 4-5 days. We will have small groups. something between 3-4-5 people, that we agree on sessions and breaks.

I am running this offer together with trendig, we call it Parents Special. Of course if you do not have kids, but would prefer to have shorter training sessions, you are welcomed to join. Only condition – be nice if another participant or the trainer gets interrupted and we have to make an unplanned break. We are doing our best, but this is not normal HomeOffice. This is CHO (short for CoronaHomeOffice)! Life happens while we are on video call and sometimes we cannot postpone it. 

If you have any other questions, I am here to answer them all.

Testing Guidelines For Junior Tester

This is a very short visual guide for a junior tester.


  1. Do exploratory testing. That means: be curious, attentive and organized.

come1   come2

2. Try mindmaps to get the testing ideas and cheatsheets to try different inputs and watch carefully for side effects.


3. Trust your intuition, see what others do not see and make it visible. How? Use different personas, ask strange questions, like: “can this application kill a person”, and read stories how others test.


4. Report findings properly, describe the beauty harm in simple reproducible steps and do not forget to mention, why it is important to fix the bug in next iteration. I think it is bad style to write in bug report something like this: “unless you remove the “border=0” attribute“.

Show respect = get respect.


Enjoy the video, which inspired me to write the guidelines:



Pay It Forward

I am currently working on my Agile Testing Days talk, organizing MeetUp event to celebrate one year of Test Paradise and another bigger testing event which we will announce very, very soon. In the same time, my little daughter and myself got cold and had to stay in beds. We were watching a lot of Frozen.

Elsa in Let it go sings following lyrics:

“And the fears that once controlled me, can’t get to me at all
It’s time to see what I can do,
to test the limits and break through.”

Is she singing about boundary testing?!

Albert Einstein Elsa of Arendelle


Why am I writing about children’s cartoon? Because I like the idea about gaining confidence and it makes sense together with one of my current read – Confessions of a Public Speaker by Scott Berkun. To acknowledge consequences and be yourself. It is scary to stand in front of people and be some kind of an expert, even if only in your story, in one particular situation. Much safer it is to stay quiet in the crowd, that no one gets an idea to question your expertise. 

I know that because I was quiet myself for a long time. I felt very inexperienced, no matter what I learned or delivered. So why I finally left my fears behind and dare to step up? Did I suddenly become an expert? No. Really no. I know there is too much out there what I still do not know. I am on my way and now I know that my stories can help those who are just starting. Or as Albert Einstein put it together:

“Every day I remind myself that my inner and outer life are based on the labors of other men, living and dead, and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am still receiving.”

30DayChallenge – part III



It is July. Most of my team is on vacation. I am counting days till I go on my summer vacation. Difficult time to make team photo. But I decided that two members of team is also a team. My colleague agreed that photo of us will be uploaded on web. As we went for a walk after lunch I asked someone to take a picture. Funny that the person found feature on my phone, which I did not know existed: one click = 40 photos.


I really like my workspace, that is why I wanted to make photo of it. I share the office with other three of my colleagues. We have a lot of greens and pictures of our vacations on the walls.


This is hybris backend view – my daily screen to check how system is working.



I shared with my frontend developer blog post about Chrome extensions. We did lately a lot of element scripting together and really like how handy is CSS Viewer.

Comment Challenge

Week ago I observed twitter conversation about commenting on testing blogs. It started with Patrick’s tweet that he read 25 blog posts. Wow! Right? But than Danny asked him, how many comments Patrick wrote. Zero. TwitterI met Patrick few weeks ago, he is really nice guy! But this is not about Patrick, it is about habit. Ask me, how many comment did I leave last weeks? Zero! Why? Mostly I like what I read, it makes me think, it gives me new ideas, new approach for my issues. So why not to prize it, why not to tell it to the author? First excuses what come up in my mind – it takes time and effort. Better to read another blog post, than to think what exactly moved me. Some kind of fast-food reading. Do I want to be fast-food reader?

And than Geir had that idea of 1 comment per week. No matter that commenting idea in testing community is not new, any how it does not stick. Several before tried to kick it off. I get much inspirations from Rosie, but her community challenge last summer I missed out. This year SheyMouse talked about it in his TestBash 99 seconds talk. It is so easy – just one comment in every seven days. So this is it – I challenge myself to comment at least once per week!

Since it was already a week ago, I can report my first results :)

Good that I took that tiny habit workshop few month ago. Few things what I learned there are:

  • it should be light and
  • connected to some action.

Of course I link it with post reading. So now when I am reading, I weight it. If I would comment, what would I write? What exactly I like? What exactly I think I can use in my cases? Last week I commented on three blog posts. They were not the smartest comments, but I am learning and on my way to improve it. Join me! Together we are better.


be different, be yourself

Today I feel like telling stories.

on my parents farm

I come from small country called Latvia. As a kid I was member of choir, learned to play piano and flute, danced folk dances, once even on the big stadium during Latvian Song and dance celebration. When I was 11, Latvia became independent again and my family got back properties, which were took away in 1941. We moved to our farm and I got a dog!!! I loved freedom of farm – we could see houses of our neighbours, but between us were fields, meadows and ponds. Years later when I moved to study in Riga, even than I was lucky to find a little house with a garden for a rent.

And than I met Him. He happened to be German and love of my life. It took few years, but finally I left my family, my friends, my work and little house with a garden behind me and moved to Germany. No matter than Latvian and German are quite similar cultures, I was shocked. There were so many things which I had to learn! At first that there are still two Germanies (for two years we lived in place near Stuttgart, where even my German husband was a foreigner).  I learned to know neighbours, which were very curious, untactfully controlled our waste and gave me suggestions how to better sort it! (Nowadays I get small crises myself if I see plastic waste in paper bin, but I do not know which of our neighbours are sorting wrong). Than that every one and everything has an insurance e.g. die Haftpflichtversicherung what is something like “public liability insurance”. When we got our kids, it became more interesting. I could not imagine to talk with my kids in other language as in Latvian. Some people had and have a problem with that, offended call it secret language and many think that I backbite them. Of course I want to integrate myself and to belong to the community, but I also wanted to keep my personality. Besides I wanted that my kids are able to talk to their grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins in Latvia. There are no schools or lessons for Latvian kids in Thuringia – how much I will talk, read, play, make, sing to them, that is how much they will learn Latvian language and culture. So I decided and talked consequent with my kids only Latvian. At home, on the street, in the kindergarden and at friends. To others I explained that there are no secrets, that I simply talk to my kids Latvian and if they want, one of us can translate every single sentence. My experiment was successful. How do I know it? First of all, my kids speak good Latvian and are not ashamed to do it. Second, children in kindergarden know that there are at least three languages in the world: German, English and Latvian. Latvian for them is not a strange exotic language from nowhere, but simply a language.

Now my oldest is already in grammer school and time to time I get so tired to be different, but I know that there is no way back.

Why do I write all of this? Because I see similar pattern somewhere else in my life – in my profession. Software testing is like strange exotic language in the world of software development. They hear it, rise their eyebrows if it is too loud, but do not take it serious. How I deal with it? Similar like talking Latvian in Germany:

  1. be proud of yourself and your work
  2. be consequent
  3. be tolerant and translate to others how and why you do what you do

Imagine A Conference

Imagine a conference. What do you see? Expensive hotel… companies with big names… people, who all pretend to be extremely successfully… small talks about titles and budgets? Yes, there are many conferences of this kind. Test Bash is different. Test Bash is all about people, about testers, gate keepers, working in pairs or solo, trying to understand customer needs and to build the right thing. Being human and accepting ignorance. Working with smart algorithms, web applications, or taking care of security tests. Manual or automation. Everyone is welcomed!

This is a place where you can stand on the stage and share your story how you failed… and audience will understand you and support. Because we all failed once. No need to pretend. Together we are stronger!

You don’t believe me that such conference is possible? Only chance to verify it – buy a ticket to the next Test Bash conference and see it yourself!

Note 1: Wanz is a software tester. Cool, right?!

Note 2: I cried in the conference. I heard stories similar mine. I was not alone any more.

Reading Club

I have a colleague, which is great tester and super good lunch buddy, but she is also mother of two little boys. She would love to learn more about testing, but struggles to find the time for it. On the other side – me, doing hundred things in the same time and quite oft finishing only some of them.

So we had an idea to read a book about software testing together. One week – one chapter, weekly discussions and thought sharing to keep our motivations high. We start with “Explore it!” by Elisabeth Hendrickson.

"Explore It!" A book on exploratory testing by Elisabeth Hendrickson

My colleague will read German translation, I – original English. We plan to start on Eastern. I will keep you posted how we will do.

Post Navigation