If you are working with the non-Microsoft environment, then your best choice of languages will be Java, C++ and Perl. The C++ is powerful, but the most cost complexity language and performing an automation testing is quite difficult whereas Perl is difficult to maintain. In comparison to both Java is the excellent language for test automation. Ruby is another language that has become quite important, the gradual support for this language has forced support in various tools too.
Apart from these languages one must also focus on the following mentioned skills as ultimately attitude beats all the language knowledge.
Software testers should know the programming basics. A tester who can’t program, at least basic programs, can’t be as effective a software tester. I remember in the company I first worked at, there was a rule to the effect of – to be able to become a tester, one must complete a development rotation first. What this achieved was that testers could relate and imagine the code structure when testing, thus providing great value to the developers and system engineers during the testing phase. This is when a test team truly provides value added services to the product they are testing.
Software testers must be constantly learning. The world of technology is not stagnant. It changes at the blink of an eye. Today, we’re talking about transporting people from Britain to Australia in less than three hours via jet planes that fly in space!
I am not saying that everyone should go out now and start learning aviation science. What I’m saying is that testers should not sit in their comfort zones and defend their lack of capabilities by providing the world famous defence motion of ‘I am only testing this’. Among many, one of the most important things a tester should learn is the constant growth of the product domain. A common misconception testers have is that product knowledge equals domain knowledge. This is completely wrong. Knowing the product is of course very important, but having the domain knowledge is vital. Not knowing the domain in which the system under test comes from is not only irresponsible but also dangerous.
Mind of innovation
Testers must constantly think how they can do two things, and do them well:
a) vary the testing scenarios and b) improve their testing methods.
Armed with these two skills, varying the testing scenario now just becomes a matter of strategizing. Implementing it is not a problem anymore. This frees the tester to concentrate on test strategies, rather than the details of testing. They stop ‘sweating the small stuff’, for the lack of better words. Many software testing tools and programs are results of such forward thinking.
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