June 26, 2018
When the World Cup starts to sound like your work
The World Cup is going on right now with the world’s most popular sport, and most of the world knows to call the sport by its proper name: football (sorry, U.S. – you’ve got 8 years to learn it before you co-host). While you’re watching, many software testers may hear terminology that you’ve heard on the job but with different meanings. Here is some vocabulary in common to both football and software testing, first defined through software testing, then through football:
Attacker: In cyber, who you’re defending against. In football, who you’re defending against (also called a striker).
Bench: Environment where software or device testing occurs. Where your potential subs wait next to the pitch.
Blocker: A bug that prevents other testing. Defenseman.
Box: Content holder on a page, or a checkbox/tickbox for short. Section in front of a goal, also called a penalty area, where a foul could yield a PK on the keeper.
Break: Popular SQA verb or an exit from a loop when white box testing. Attack play where defenders suddenly storm as attackers en masse.
Channel: A means of accessing a retail customer which should be optimized for user experience. A gap on the field between players.
Chip: Part of a microprocessor. A lobbed kick over the keeper and into the goal.
Clear: Empty the cache and dump cookies. Get the ball away from the goal.
Clearance: SQA requirement for certain kinds of government work. Defending the ball away from the goal.
Coverage: Completeness of what you need to test. How you mark the field or opposing team.
Cross: Word in front of browser testing or platform testing, because that (browser or platform) is the variable in the test scenario. A sideways often-airborne pass right in front of the goal, where an assist might pop it in.
Defender: Any person, software, or technique used to prevent a cyber attack. Defenseman.
Flag: In white box testing, a value holder that’s often Boolean. Referee prop or the use of such a prop.
Header: Where a banner goes on a webpage. Maneuver where you use your head on the ball, to advance or deflect.
Home: On websites or cell phones, a button for returning to the main page. A game at your field, not the other team’s.
Intercept: Use a sniffer, possibly for a Man in the Middle attack. Block a pass.
Knockout: A JS web development framework, older than Angular and Ember, that still might be involved in testing. Sudden death (well, more of a slow death) PK competition in a someone-must-win game after time runs out.
Meg: A quantity of a million, usually referring to bytes (MB). Kick the ball through your opponent’s legs.
Pass: Have a test succeed. Transfer the ball to another player.
PK: Short for Player Kill, from gaming testing. Short for Penalty Kick (a foul-caused defenderless shot on goal, shot straight from 11 meters away).
Post: Deploy or publish (or in all caps, one of the 2 main HTTP commands – GET is the other). The vertical bar on either side of the goal.
Rabona: Really, you thought this might be a software testing term? This football term is for a shot where the kicking leg wraps around the standing leg, which may confuse the keeper. While wrappers are often used for executing test scripts, no one ever calls rabonas “wrappers”.
Rejected: Having the bug you logged get closed without any developer work. Having your goal-ward play get shut down.
Release: A software build. To set up for a shot on goal.
Simulation: An approximation used for testing that is not quite the real thing. FIFA’s term for diving (taking a dive to pretend you were fouled).
Stoppage: When the software is blocked from testing or in the field due to a problem. When the game is blocked from being played in the field due to a problem (this stoppage time is added back in later).
Timeout: A safety to conserve resources when a session runs too long before an expected action occurs. Something the ref, not a coach, calls to stop the clock.
Too good to go down: Oft-mistaken belief that the system is outage-proof. Oft-mistaken belief that the team is relegation-proof.
Trap: Use an exception handler to go to a known place in the code, often being verbose about the problem. Use of one’s body to tame a flying ball.
Video technology: Often used in entertainment and Learning Management Systems, tech advances push for faster and higher quality streaming capabilities, including 5G, all of which need software testing. Instant replay for use in understanding a close call play, still not used in FIFA.
Scrum would certainly be on this list if we were talking rugby instead of football. Let us know if you can think of any others that should be added to this list by commenting below. Good luck everyone, and may your favorite team win on July 15!