In the first post in our MythBusters series, we examined the misperception that testing is solely a compliance activity and showed how it’s actually a business critical function with bottom-line impact. In this installment, we’re looking at the role AI plays in the industry, the numerous misconceptions that abound, and why it’s important that companies cut through the noise to understand how the technology can benefit them today.
A surge in traffic is in many ways a dream for any website. After all, more traffic means more customers and more sales.
However, you can sometimes do your job too well when your successful marketing campaign brings surges of traffic, causing your website or app to slow down and even crash. There’s nothing more heartbreaking than seeing your website or app fail just when you have the most to gain.
Most blogs and articles just state traffic-induced crashes as something that can happen. But if you don’t understand how high traffic crashes a website or app, how can you expect to avoid the problem?
In a recent Forbes interview on the retail customer experience, Harley Manning, VP and research director of Forrester’s customer experience team, said; “Customer expectations are rising slowly—but faster than brands are making improvements.” He further elaborated that the average score in the firm’s CX Index™ for US digital retailers decreased from the prior year, with no retailer breaking through the 85th percentile to make it into the “excellent” category.
Today’s complex, digital world relies on computer systems and software and downtime is more than an inconvenience—in many industries, it’s a critical failure that can have a lasting, negative impact on customer experience, the corporate brand and the bottom line.
Wikipedia will tell you that “software testing is an investigation conducted to provide stakeholders with information about the quality of the software product or service under test.” While technically accurate, this definition does not encapsulate all that testing does and how critical the function is in our complex, hyperconnected world.
A recent Bloomberg headline proclaimed, “Human Spaceflight Could be a $23 Billion Industry by 2030.” The article examined a UBS report on space travel, which predicts that “spaceflight” will compete with long-distance airline flights in the not-too-distant future.
It’s a fascinating prospect, and one that underscores how critical it is for software to perform optimally in mission critical environments. Eggplant’s Antony Edwards recently explored this theme in detail in a DigitalisationWorld article, highlighting some of the key technology challenges facing space exploration.
A recent SD Times article suggested that AI is not delivering tangible testing improvements, cautioning “…customers need to realize there’s probably more hype than reality in most of what test solution vendors are saying.” This sentiment reminds us of the unhelpfully polarized “manual-vs-automated test execution” debate that held back testing for 10 years and we’ve only recently moved on from with the realization that there’s a place for both in testing. It would be catastrophic for the testing industry if we went into another 10 year debate of “AI-vs-non-AI” only to realize that there are strong benefits to AI, but it probably doesn’t solve everything.
These sentiments are unhelpful and dangerous to the testing community. Sure, there are exaggerated claims about the use and impact of AI in some products, but there are also fantastic products that demonstrate that the technology can deliver real improvements today. Below are just a few examples of how AI can help testing now—not several years down the road:
A recent Forbes Insights survey confirmed that there is strong C-Suite interest in artificial intelligence, with eighty percent of CEOs and eighty-five percent of IT leaders pointing to AI as a core component of their digital transformation efforts. While the technology is sometimes—and mistakenly—associated with job loss, AI’s true power actually lies in its ability to augment human decision-making.
In early 2017, US grocery chain Winn-Dixie invested $7 million to improve its website but overlooked a critical component: testing to ensure it was accessible to people with disabilities. This mistake garnered national attention when the retailer lost a federal case accusing it of violating the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
The Winn-Dixie lawsuit is considered a landmark case but it’s hardly a unique situation—website compliance suits are on the rise. According to a legal blog tracking these cases, there were at least 2,258 such suits filed in the US alone in 2018—an increase of 177 percent from the prior year.
There are two things you should know about the latest release of Eggplant AI, our intelligent test automation solution.
1: It will give you much greater insight into the quality of your releases.
2: It will make your testing process more focused and more efficient.