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Friday, October 05, 2007

3 Days of Demo

From Wed (3 Oct) to Fri (5 Oct), I had my Software Acceptance Test (SWAT). It involved people from various goverment agencies to evaluate the system my project team had developed. This is not the final version but it still took us 3 days to complete the test.

First 2 days were my show. I had to go through all the individual test cases.

The first day was reserved to showing all the functionalities that were agreed upon on many previous user requirements sessions. Lucky there were no major problems except some minor MMI changes. There was this particular evaluator from XXXX agency who kept asking questions that did not add any value at all. One of the many stupid questions from him is "why must we set a restrict users from entering values outside 15-25 XX units". My answer to him is straight and simple - "Reason being the system engineer gave me this range and have told me with this range, output will be guaranteed and optimal. Anything outside this range cannot be guaranteed with well calibrated output". I thought this was such a small issue and I did not see this input restriction would in any way affect the software. If in any case the system engineer allow a wider or narrower range, I would just have to change the range check. It would not take me much effort in doing so. Couldn't he just understand and move on? Why debating over such a minute issue for hours! Even the end-users with no technical knowledge could understand.

On the second day of my demo, I was to conduct Full Load Test, Endurance Test, Reserve Requirement Test, and Free Play Test. All these 4 tests were conducted together in a span of 6 hours! I left the system running for the next 6 hours and incorporating full load scenario to see if system still performed normally. At regular intervals, available CPU and RAM usage readings were recorded to ensure there should have 50% available resource at any point in time. Concurrently, end-users were to start using and hands-on the system. They were also allowed to "crash" the system to test how well it could handle erroneous inputs. All went smoothly.

On the third day, first half of the day was my colleague's show while the second half was more like 50-50 affair for us. Again, the XXXX irritating guy brought up his many problematic unnecessary questions again. He even argued over a statement my boss wrote on the Minutes of Meeting. My boss wrote - ".. shall revert on the cost/schedule, if any...". I thought it was a fair statement for both sides. There's a change request and it's an action item. Of course if the change is going to be effortless, demanding for additional money or timeframe would be unreasonable, and if the change is going to be an impact, then it's right for us to request for extra man-months. However, the XXXX guy just could not see the picture. We spent hours debating over this statement. He is a very stubborn person.

Oh ya, I almost forgot to mention the 3 days feast! In these 3 days, there were 2 tea breaks and lunch being catered for! Tea breaks were those standard style often seen provided by catering service. However, I would say the lunch being catered for were quite incredible. All the 3 lunches I had come with a 6 course package plus 1 additional huge plate of nicely cut fresh fruits. The 6 course package comprised of 1 whole fish, chicken, pork, prawns, beancurd and vegetable. Menu for the 3 days were all different. Lunches were not from catering service but rather, it's from our canteen so all dishes were all freshly cooked right out of the oven. Fresh fruits comprises of grapes, oranges, dragon fruits and kiwi. Really had a very filling lunch for the past 3 days.

Ok, back to reality.

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