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My Experience with Small Businesses

June 16, 2011 by kiranbadi1991 | Comments Off on My Experience with Small Businesses | Filed in Development, Small Businesses

Sometimes back I had short discussion with a owner of the small business ,who was facing some issues with his flash based streaming web site and was expecting that some one identify and fix that issue.The Nature of the problem was that some users connecting to his site were not able to see the live streaming video.Some of his users had given feedback about this  to him.However still a large percentage of users were able to access his site with out any issues.The owner was assuming that this might be related to Cross Browser issues and wanted to confirm whether certain browser versions/Make are in fact showing the same behavior.

So he gave me the link of his site for testing if I can reproduce the same error what his users were seeing. Being in the testing profession,I always have different version of browsers along with different Open source OS installed in my laptop. So initially I browsed through the site with all available version of Browser, and to be honest, site was doing fantastic and had good response time and user experience. After playing around the site for sometime, I started having a feeling that I may not be able to reproduce the error, hmm WTF.But the owner of the site was seeing that error and his users were giving him a feedback saying that something is wrong with site and they are at times not able to view streaming video.

Well after a while of thinking on this, I opened the 8 instances of the browser and in all 8 instance ,clicked go to the site.I followed the same navigational step in all instance of the browser and selected the same video for viewing.Hurray, at least 2 instance of the browser were seeing the exact issue what owner of the small business had reported. Felt little bit relieved now given that we were able to reproduce the issue quite successfully.

Next Step was figuring out as what the issue is. My personal thoughts was that issue here isn’t cross browser testing, it more of the load.Owner of the site all along the way was thinking that his site is not compatible with certain version/make of browser. However finding were different. Sometime the way we reproduce the issue tells us where the problem lies.

Now that we had confirmed that there exists an issue in the site. However is this information sufficient to the small business owners ? I guess not , this information is just not sufficient for them given that they are small business owners. So he was seeking more information ,like what was the issue, what exactly were the end users seeing ? Was the problem in the code or in the server ? There were many similar questions. If we look at the pattern of his questions,we can see that he was more frustrated given that he did not know the source of the problem and maybe due to this he was not able to define the scope of the fix. Well after a digging a while I did gave him some technical exception messages which his site was throwing. I will write a separate post on that as how I did it and if you are tester and you are testing flash based application irrespective of types of testing, I highly recommend that you read my next post and follow it in your project.

So finally about lession learned here: if we are dealing with small businesses with regard to testing,then we need to keep the team of developers with us. They expect “Development”  and “Testing” to be done by the same person/group or company for various reasons.


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