Three Things I Learned This Week - 15th Feb 2020

Back when I was a swaggery manager sort, I used to screen candidates with a phone call first. One of my prime criteria was for continuous learners - I wanted people who were learning, and aware that they were responsible for driving that learning. I used to screen that mindset with a horrible on-the-spot question: “Name three things you’ve learned in the last week”.

Given that I challenged other people with this question, it seemed only fair that I be able to answer it myself, and I do. I regularly, in my head, challenge myself to answer this question to test whether I’m keeping to the standards I expect from others.

In a separate thread of avoiding hypocrisy, following an interesting parenting experience with my pre-teen, I’ve been trying harder in 2020 to hold myself accountable to others in order that I might both cement my thoughts and learn from any feedback.

And so…

This week:

  • Some testers are using Java (or other) automation frameworks to store manual tests in Gherkin, in hopes that they’ll later get refined and automated. Whilst I kinda see the logic in that as an option, I’m not sure I see the value in doing this “as standard”, although there’s a whole other rant on testers using Gherkin in isolation.
  • It’s possible to use React in static site generators like Jekyll. This blog doesn’t, but nice to know that tooling exists all the same.
  • Kubernetes isn’t “Docker for Enterprise”. Docker is “Docker for Enterprise”. Kubernetes is another thing, has some non-trivial setup and configuration (which I’m imagining is somewhat simplified if one uses AWS Fargate or similar), and just like Docker, shoving “any old app” into a container without some amount of rearchitecture is fraught with difficulty requiring some superb engineering effort to resolve.

Some bonus observations:

  • For any 1 working CloudFormation script, at least 2 people have a suggestion to improve it, and so despite being JSON or YAML, infrastructure-as-code is just like regular code.
  • Google Meet calls are fairly impervious to connectivity changes like connecting to a VPN. Witchcraft.
  • Pluralsight still seems a little weak for content on testing.

I’m going to attempt to keep this regular, and hopefully write it as I go through the week rather than retrospectively, perhaps pulling in some useful links too.