The Braidy Tester makes another great testing post. Given the amount he just wrote about tracking fixing up defective unit tests – it just proves how important the role of “tester who codes” is on a development team. Its depressing that there aren’t more of them around outside of the Redmond sphere.
As this is pretty much what I do for a living, and have done for years now, I thought that I should add my two cents worth as a comment on Mitch’s blog.
Mitch, There are a few of us out here in OZ, a Gold Partner (that I used to work for), is owned by an ex Microsoft Test Manager that specialises in providing just those types of services, (www.devtest.com). In Australia the term “Software Tester” carries quite a negative stigma compared to “Software Developer”, especially in the open job market. Try explaining to a recruiter that, no you aren’t a developer, but yes you have used .net since it was beta 1. So many good people that would otherwise happily work as a tester who develops, move to straight development, otherwise they remain on a lower salary tier for no good reason.
Interestingly, with Test Driven Development, the average developer knows a lot more about testing than they used to, but as I have said in a previous post, nothing finds bugs like an experienced, knowledgeable tester.
Testers who can analyse code to write tests that highlight common coding errors like; boundary conditions and poor input validation, are much more effective than someone who performs black box testing, with no knowledge of how the internals of a system works.