Software QA FYI - SQAFYI

Glossary of Software QA/Testing

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Big-Bang Strategy
Big-Bang approach is very simple in its philosophy where basically all the modules or builds are constructed and tested independently of each other and when they are finished, they are all put together at the same time.
The main advantage of this approach is that it is very quick as no drivers or stubs are needed, thus cutting down on the development time.
However, as with anything that is quickly slapped together, this process usually yields more errors than the other two. Since these errors have to be fixed and take more time to fix than errors at the module level, this method is usually considered the least effective.
Because of the amount of coordination that is required it is also very demanding on the resources. Another drawback is that there is really nothing to demonstrate until all the modules have been built and integrated.

An inspection is more formalized than a 'walkthrough', typically with 3-8 people including a moderator, reader, and a recorder to take notes. The subject of the inspection is typically a document such as a requirements spec or a test plan, and the purpose is to find problems and see what's missing, not to fix anything. Attendees should prepare for this type of meeting by reading thru the document; most problems will be found during this preparation. The result of the inspection meeting should be a written report. Thorough preparation for inspections is difficult, painstaking work, but is one of the most cost effective methods of ensuring quality. Employees who are most skilled at inspections are like the 'eldest brother' in the parable in 'Why is it often hard for management to get serious about quality assurance?'. Their skill may have low visibility but they are extremely valuable to any software development organization, since bug prevention is far more cost-effective than bug detection.
1) A formal evaluation technique in which software requirements, design, or code are examined in detail by a person or group other than the author to detect faults, violations of development standards, and other problems. 2) A quality improvement process for written material that consists of two dominant components: product (document) improvement and process improvement (document production and inspection). Instrument: To install or insert devices or instructions into hardware or software to monitor the operation of a system or component.

An inspection is a formal meeting, more formalized than a walk-through and typically consists of 3-10 people including a moderator, reader (the author of whatever is being reviewed) and a recorder (to make notes in the document). The subject of the inspection is typically a document, such as a requirements document or a test plan. The purpose of an inspection is to find problems and see what is missing, not to fix anything. The result of the meeting should be documented in a written report. Attendees should prepare for this type of meeting by reading through the document, before the meeting starts; most problems are found during this preparation. Preparation for inspections is difficult, but is one of the most cost-effective methods of ensuring quality, since bug prevention is more cost effective than bug detection.

Coverage analysis
Determining and assessing measures associated with the invocation of program structural elements to determine the adequacy of a test run. Coverage analysis is useful when attempting to execute each statement, branch, path, or iterative structure in a program. Tools that capture this data and provide reports summarizing relevant information have this feature.

The sudden and complete failure of a computer system or component.

The degree of impact that a requirement, module, error, fault, failure, or other item has on the development or operation of a system. Syn: severity.

Cyclomatic complexity
(1)The number of independent paths through a program.
(2)The cyclomatic complexity of a program is equivalent to the number of decision statements plus 1.

A discrepancy between a computed, observed, or measured value or condition and the true, specified, or theoretically correct value or condition.

Error guessing
Test data selection technique. The selection criterion is to pick values that seem likely to cause errors.

Error seeding
error seeding. (IEEE) The process of intentionally adding known faults to those already in a computer program for the purpose of monitoring the rate of detection and removal, and estimating the number of faults remaining in the program. Contrast with mutation analysis.

An event that causes suspension of normal program execution. Types include addressing exception, data exception, operation exception, overflow exception, protection exception, and underflow exception.

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Glossary of Software QA/Testing