Agile 2008 starts next Tuesday. Janet Gregory and I will do a tutorial Tuesday morning on "The Tester Who Came In from the Cold". We designed this tutorial in response to meeting so many teams where the programmers got trained in TDD and CI, the project managers all went to ScrumMaster training, but the testers were just left wondering what they were supposed to do on this new agile team. We'll give examples of how managers can help testers "come in from the cold", as well as how testers can help themselves. We have a cool exercise planned, we're pumped.
On Wednesday, I'll help Patrick Wilson-Welsh with his super tutorial on how to get your "test pyramid" right side up. Most new agile teams have the most test automation at the GUI layer, because those tools are usually easy for testers to learn, and the least at the unit level, because TDD is hard to learn. Patrick has added to Mike Cohn's test pyramid metaphor with a "three little pigs" reference. The unit level base of the pyramid is bricks, the behind-the-GUI middle layer is sticks, and the top GUI layer is straw. Of course you need GUI test automation, but it's usually the highest maintenance and the lowest overall ROI. He'll demo examples of tools for each layer. We'll both share stories of how our teams inverted their test pyramids. If time permits, we'll have a "micro open space" for participants to brainstorm how they'll go back and get their pyramids flipped around!
Please let me know if you'll be at Agile 2008. I'll only be there Tuesday and Wednesday (many conferences this year, a full time job and not enough vacation time!) but I'd like to catch up with as many friends (old and new) as I can. I'm especially looking forward to catching up with all the great agile Canadians (particularly those from Calgary!)
I've been to every XP, XP/AU, Agile Development Conference and Agile conference that's been held, starting with XP 2001 in N.C. I'm glad I'll make to Toronto! (I love Toronto too, wish I had more time to spend there...)