Tester's Digest

A weekly source of software testing news


ISSUE #36 - October 28, 2017

This Halloween issue of Tester’s Digest covers scary bugs, tester’s nightmares, and other spooky things.

Topic: Scary Bugs

A Halloween themed post on the deep seated fears of QA engineers. Spoiler alert! They are: 1) ageism; 2) fear of not finding the bugs (let me try that in Latin… nonreperimendafobia?), 3) inexperienced, cheap QA zombies. Test automation is not to be feared.


If you have an iPhone, open your calculator app and quickly type 1+2+3= then scream in terror at the result.


How to set your computer’s clock to be in year 2153 without NTP blinking an eye:


Short digest of bad bugs of 2015, doesn’t go into root cause detail, only covers impact:


Twitter’s 2014 crash, and why wasn’t it caught in prior load testing:


Worst security breaches of 2016:


From Verizon’s 2017 Data Breach Digest, a story of what happened when a university was attacked by an IoT botnet:


88% of spreadsheets used in business and industry contain errors, including very serious errors to the tune of millions of dollars. This did horrify me. To reduce error rate, spreadsheet developers could employ good practices such as individual and group code review, and blameless culture.



Great and terrifying in their honesty and subject matter, these non-software postmortems come from Brigham and Women’s Hospital of Boston, MA. These folks are amazingly open about their incidents (that sometimes cost patient lives, yes) and committed to quality, safety, and Just Culture. See their SAFETY MATTERS ARCHIVE for more writeups.



Turns out, QA all-nighters are a thing! Not where I’ve worked… we tend to plan for testing. But, supposing you had to pull an all-nighter, this post details how to attend to your body: make it cold, make it bright, chew peppermint (the last point debunked in a comment).


If you received this email directly then you’re already signed up, thanks! Else if this newsletter issue was forwarded to you and you’d like to get one weekly, then you can subscribe at http://testersdigest.mehras.net

If you come across content worth sharing, please send me a link at testersdigest@mehras.net