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Automated tools for testing: review

Automated tools for testing: review

Software testing like any other IT industry branch provides a wide field for automation. As complexity of software products increases, the quantity of steps required to assure their quality is literally boosting; and definitely a great deal of those steps can be performed by automated tools. So let us investigate how this demand for test automation software is being met today.

The first stage is automating the code investigation and improvement process. Such things as checking the compatibility of code units in a big software project are impossible to perform manually. Given that each project has its peculiar code structure, the unit tests are typically written by developers. In order to facilitate this process they use special testing frameworks such as xUnit. Most of those frameworks are open-source and thus the deep customization is possible in order to meet specific demands of a project in a best way.

Февраль 12, 2014|Articles|0 Comments

Testing: an unnecessary supplement or a critical function?

Know your quality!

Initially an auxiliary project role, quality assurance is nevertheless a non-removable link of a software product delivery chain. Obviously, no one would oppose its necessity; the actual question is, whether it does require a specific role in a team. Including a separate QA engineer into a project is one of the common practices in software development, yet in every certain case it depends on project goals and available resources.

Software testing has made a long way from a general concept to a specific profession, as the entire software development industry grew and evolved. This process as usually is marked with differentiation of technical roles and therefore with growth of specialization. The division of development and testing tasks as an element of the general division of labour trend has grounded the necessity of a separate QA role in a project.

Январь 24, 2014|Articles|0 Comments

What is the modern look of IT outsourcing?

Where Do Big Projects Live

Software outsourcing has made a long way already and it has more or less reached the phase of steady growth which is a typical feature of a mature, developed phenomena. Thus its characteristics are easier to describe. First of them is the significant separation between countries hosting outsourcing service providers, and countries which mostly contribute to the demand for these services. Economic reasons are decisive here, so naturally the latter group consists of developed countries: USA, UK, Germany, Switzerland, Australia and others.

USA (together with Canada which is technically a part of the same IT cluster) remains the leading host of IT businesses and projects and thus contributes most of all to the worldwide demand for outsourcing services. Outsourcing has long ago become a notable factor in US economy, causing numerous debates about its impact and future trends. Naturally, the massive employment of abroad labor resources produces concerns among industry workers at home. However, the best response is to compete, not to complain; and the local IT resources are gradually joining the outsourcing segment themselves. Since the end of 2012 it was often remarked in media that inner market of outsourcing (that is, on-shoring or in-house) services is growing steadily in North America.

EU is also enjoying the rapid growth of IT industry. The trend of post-industrialism is even stronger here so hi-tech branches tend to enlarge their market share. Precise machinery, labor automation, online banking systems, entertainment – all that makes insatiable (at least now) demand for newer, smarter solutions. At the same time, shortage of skilled software engineers and desire to develop more cost-effective business schemes urge European IT companies to seek for offshore contributors. Due to some obvious reasons, which we discussed in our previous entry, they tend to find outsourcers just beyond the border. Former USSR members (such as Russia and Ukraine) and some of the eastern EU members (such as Romania or Poland) are actively growing their potential as prominent offshoring/nearshoring centers.

UK holds a specific place in this picture. Being a part of EU, it nevertheless has more economic and cultural connections with some abroad territories due to its geographic placement and therefore is less bound to regional services providers. It possesses the most powerful – and therefore demanding – software development cluster in Europe, which does not escape the pan-European trend of IT specialists’ shortage. According to experts, UK’s share in the IT outsourcing market in EMEA region (Europe + Middle East + Africa) is about

Декабрь 19, 2013|Articles|0 Comments

Outsourcing — the history of notion and phenomenon

Factors And Preconditions

It is often said that the general enterprise structure was shaped during the age of Industrial revolution and did not dramatically change since then. It won’t be an exaggeration to state that basic business schemas can also be traced to that good ol’ time. The idea of passing parts of your work to subcontractors has by no means a different history. It is just the scale that makes difference. Besides, a phenomenon must exist for some time in order to get named and classified.

In its narrower meaning, the notion ‘outsourcing’ is tied with software development industry. Software outsourcing began its rise in 1980s when the software market grew mature enough. Intense competition is a usual outcome of an economic boom; thus the growing success of the software industry urged its niche players to seek more cost-efficient schemas.

Certain economic conditions were required in order to make offshore software development profitable and massively utilized. Firstly, a powerful hi-tech sector should exist in a country with booming economy. Secondly, appearance of big-sized locations with much poorer economies but numerous human resources with sustainable level of technical knowledge were required. By 1990s they were mostly reached. USA, and in a lesser amount Northern & Western Europe, experienced huge growth of computer technologies sector. At the same time India and China became important parts of the global market after serious economic reforms took place in both countries.

Software Market: A Little Too Rapid Start?

The beginning of 1990s was marked with personal computers massively appearing in offices and households, with development of the first web browsers and with construction of global networks which immediately changed the process of knowledge exchange on the international scale. All that created a never-saturated demand for software – newer, more functional, more agile and better-looking apps. Its key role in the world of future was widely acknowledged back then. Some even overestimated the overall dependence on software solutions which led to appearance of such frightening predictions as the Year 2000 problem.

Fast growth of this technology segment had a downside. Software engineer was still a new job role. Experienced developers were rare; there were fewer opportunities to get appropriate education and training. Therefore people much more often had to get knowledge through self-education. There was significant shortage on working hands; and as new software producing companies in North America appeared and grew, they had to look abroad for people with good knowledge of computer science.

Ноябрь 27, 2013|Articles|0 Comments

How to organize cooperation with remote teams: pitfalls and ways to avoid them

Software outsourcing received a boost when the global crisis broke loose in 2008; and despite all pessimistic forecasts it continued to flourish after the economic recovery started. No wonder – a successful business model may be forged by calamities but it does not mean it will be neglected when things get settled again. Still there are some certain factors really stopping it from gaining dominant positions in IT. Apart from its well-known advantages, hiring a remote team and incorporating it into an existing company structure includes a number of flaws which can eventually result in significant risks.

Absence Of Readiness? Detecting At Early Stage

Sometimes, some people have to be controlled. There are different approaches to the problem of supervision; yet anyway one must be sure a team works properly. And you cannot control a remote team in the same way as ordinary office workers.

Measurement of performance is therefore a core element of remote teamwork organizing. Since a manager cannot inspect a remote team physically, it has to be controlled indirectly. This typically includes the following:

Ноябрь 14, 2013|Articles|1 Comment

Locations: Eastern Europe vs. Asia

Differentiation And Cooperation

Evolution of economic zones is typically driven by division of labor. Sooner or later, every single segment of society has to face the fact: a group of individuals with different, highly specific skills will be more productive than a crowd of ‘broad-range’ specialist – given that cooperation is good in both cases. There is nothing wrong about having many different skills. The real problem is that it is physically impossible to be a guru in many areas. The broader the range is, the less knowledge one has in each case.

This is true for organizations as well; and generally this principle could be applied to even bigger units, including countries. The division of labor between geographic regions is actually what the software outsourcing industry is based upon. While some places have better conditions for starting a business and developing a product idea, others can provide more workforce to do the job faster and cheaper. Utilizing these differences can lead to some cost-saving business schemas.

Ноябрь 8, 2013|Articles|2 Comments

Working with remote teams: scary myth or productive reality?

A Common Practice In Today’s IT Industry

The idea of passing company’s tasks to separate contractors is not really new, as this solution was widely used by businesses for ages, literally. What is actually specific about outsourcing (which recently became so popular in the IT industry) is that companies get their core products manufactured by teams located in other countries. Such ‘international’ schemas are possible thanks to peculiarities of software development business. With the help of Internet and some basic collaboration tools, software products can be designed, tested and shipped without regarding any geographic constraints.

Outsourcing was trendy for more than a decade already. This year did not break this tendency. As Gartner predicts, the world IT outsourcing market will experience slow but steady growth this year. According to the research, most of the industry segments are likely to be involved into this process. Well, nothing really surprising in those predictions. Software development continues to gain importance within the global economy despite (or maybe even thanks to) all recent outbreaks of financial crisis.

Ноябрь 4, 2013|Articles|0 Comments

Big data, BI and DMS: is it possible to put everything together?

Hitting The Ceiling

Isn’t it good to have many resources? Why, it is of course. But what if there are too many of them and the specifics of your business is that you have to sort them out in order to pick the most appropriate things? In such a situation the variety of accessible resources means more work, because leaving them unsorted would result in inefficient performance and consequently in loss of competitiveness.

Information is such a resource; and typically only a small percent of information received by us on a daily basis is really helpful for a certain problem. On a personal level everyone does lots of filtering all the time leaving only important things to analyze. But even a small organization receives way more data, making it too challenging to handle in a ‘traditional’ way. In such a situation, when it becomes too difficult to get rid of excessive resources, one definitely needs a new approach.

Октябрь 29, 2013|Articles|0 Comments

Business Intelligence in the era of Big Data: why is it so important?

It Has Come

It seems that we are lucky to live in an era of big changes, with brand new world coming soon. The history is truly being written just before our eyes with about 92% of the world data created during the last two years. And the speed of information generating is not becoming less. In a couple of years the entire volume of humanity’s knowledge will be hard to notice compared to the huge pile of freshly-generated data. Of course we must not disrespect the value of past centuries’ experience – this statistics shows quantity, not quality. But it seems that the data management & analytics tools of the previous decade will likely be regarded soon like some analogue of a caveman’s stone axe.

Everyone is talking about Big Data today, yet nevertheless its true face is still obscure. The position of big data scientist has become rather popular in the IT industry this year, but there is no such scientific term yet which could gave a clear explanation of features and potential of the massive information circulation phenomena. Industry experts are debating about the nature of Big Data. Many of them argue that most of the world doesn’t really understand what it exactly is though thinks it is cool and trendy. But we all can at least feel that this entity really exists and it really matters much for our life – and for businesses in particular.

Октябрь 21, 2013|Articles|0 Comments

Business Processes in DMS: what it is and how to set them right

The Role Of Enterprise DMS

Good strategy and high quality of management are key factors of success for any organization. It would be wise to add the ability to embrace technical innovations here as well. Changes are often somewhat risky to take, yet one cannot build a breakthrough business without taking some risks in case the goals are clear and the probability of winning is high enough. Sometimes an innovative technology just ought to be adopted because the alternative to this decision is the danger of being left behind by competitors. One of such must-haves is DMS system which is becoming highly popular among businesses.

Enhanced collaboration backed by a well-performing DMS results in higher quality of management on all levels. The decision making is simplified. Automated sharing of documents and ideas helps managers to control workflow and to receive feedback faster. Thus, less time is spent on organizational issues and mistakes are easier to detect. Moreover, simple and fast collaboration system encourages users to share more knowledge and consequently to generate valuable ideas and solutions.

Октябрь 15, 2013|Articles|0 Comments

InterComputer Global Services

Intercomputer Global Services is a professional European software
development company providing ECM/DMS solutions and services on such platforms as SharePoint, Documentum, Alfresco, .NET, C++, and building offshore/nearshore dedicated teams on these technologies as well.