Blog: Very Short Blog Posts (15): “Manual” and “Automated” Testers

“Help Wanted. Established scientific research lab seeks Intermediate Level Manual Scientist. Role is intended to complement our team of Automated and Semi-Automated Scientists. The successful candidate will perform research and scientific experiments without any use of tools (including computer hardware or software). Requires good communication skills and knowledge of the Hypothesis Development Life Cycle. Bachelor’s degree or five years of experience in manual science preferred.”

Sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? It should.

Related post:

“Manual” and “Automated” Testing

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4 responses to “Very Short Blog Posts (15): “Manual” and “Automated” Testers”

  1. Dave McNulla says:

    That’s one of the things that bothers me about employers but also about testers themselves. I’m a tester. ‘Manual testers’ think that I am pro-automated tests. ‘Automated testers’ think that I am pro-manual tests. I am for effectively finding good information about the product that I can share. I also wear a coat when it’s cold and shorts when it’s hot.

    Michael replies: Pro tester!

  2. Jason Brown says:

    Hi Michael,

    In general I think you do a great job educating people about testing and discrediting harmful intra-industry stereotypes and assumptions. However, this particular post I don’t find so helpful. Sure, manual testing is an oxymoron… but the focus on “tools” in this post only further marginalizes those of us who aren’t inclined to become programmers and who don’t think automation is a substitute for critical evaluation of a product.

    Michael replies: What emphasis on tools, specifically?

    Just a reminder that the most valuable tool box in testing is the human brain endowed with passion and equipped with tools of reason and imagination. These are the tools I see you as advocating, and certainly ones used by those black box testers typically stereotyped as “manual” testers.

    Was I too subtle, here?

    P.S., You know, there might actually be a benefit to “manual” scientists (philosophers) who understood the tautological and philosophical foundations of science being employed in the generating and testing of scientific hypothesis (I’ve certainly seen enough peer reviewed journal articles with premise supported by fallacies no self-respecting philosopher or logician would swallow).

    I agree. And also, I would offer that thinking of philosophers (or field scientists) as “manual scientists” might underscore the silliness of saying “manual” testers.

    Thanks for the comment.

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