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Tuesday, 26 July 2011

GTAC 2011 Cloudy with a Chance of Tests

GTAC 2011: Cloudy with a Chance of Tests

By James Whittaker

Has it only been 179 days since the last GTAC? My how time flies when you have lots of testing to do!

It is my pleasure to announce that not only is our collective attention being drawn back to this most intriguing test conference but yours truly, along with "Shoeless" Brad Green, have been asked to plan it. Given that Brad and I both spend a lot of time with our heads in the Cloud, this year's theme is cloudy with a chance of tests.

The composite meaning of this theme is purposeful: Testing apps that reside in the Cloud is itself a cloudy, as in opaque, process. Clouds on the horizon often signal change and testing in the Cloud certainly changes things. The Cloud breaks old testing paradigms and tools requiring that even the tried-and-true be rethought and recast. And, yes, the future of testing itself is cloudy and the need for testers and testing as it exists today is unclear. There are clouds gathering on the horizons of the discipline and this conference will be dedicated to interpreting their meaning and planning for their arrival. As always, GTAC will attempt to bring together people who have thought deeply about these subjects and are responsible for actual progress, technology and insights that will benefit others in the community.

We are still in the very earliest stages of planning, but here are the details as we know them:

GTAC 2011 will be in Mountain View, CA the week of October 25th and will be held at the Computer History Museum. GTAC or no GTAC, this place is well worth a visit and as an actual conference venue just might be the coolest location for GTAC ever.

As in the past, GTAC 2011 will feature a single track, all-keynote format with both internal and external speakers. We will be soliciting feedback from potential attendees about what topics and speakers are the most interesting. Our opening keynote has been determined already and it is none other than our most famous Alberto Savoia, translator of the ancient tome The Way of Testivus, and agitator extraordinaire with quotes like "Building the right 'it' is more important than building 'it' right." If anyone can gather the clouds into a hurricane, it's Alberto. You can also expect updates on our open source test tools strategy.

One important addition we seek to make this year is to have a Test Executive Session sometime during the event. The idea is to gather top decision makers and budget owners at the biggest/best/most influential web companies on the planet. It will be a discussion about testing culture, organizational structure, technology deployment, innovation and so forth by the very people who can make change happen within their company. Our readers will be asked to nominate their Directors, VPs, SVPs and so forth who own their companies' testing charter.

Stay tuned!

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