S11-1002: Better Search Engine Testing

Track: Test Environments

Testing a search engine is unlike testing most other applications. The behavior of a search engine changes as the data changes, so a search that returns one set of results today will return a different set tomorrow. Is that a bug? Or just a finely tuned search engine responding to changes in the data it searches? Search engine testing often focuses on the very first layer of functionality, “Do I get results?”, without digging deeper into “do I get great relevant results?”. Searche engine implementation projects are typically less about writing new code, and more about integrating disparate existing data sets, turning knobs and levers to tune relevancy, and really understanding your data. Testing search engines really is a holistic activity. You will leave this session armed with an overview of what search engines are, how they work, and with real life techniques to apply to exploratory testing based search as well as automated testing.

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Session Speaker:

Eric PughEric Pugh – Principal, OpenSource Connections
Fascinated by the “craft” of software development, Eric Pugh has been heavily involved in the open source world as a developer, committer, and user for the past 5 years. He is an emeritus member of the Apache Software Foundation and lately has been mulling over how we move from the read/write web to the read/write/share web. In biotech, financial services and defense IT, he has helped European and American companies develop coherent strategies for embracing open source software. As a speaker he has advocated the advantages of Agile practices in software development. He has contributed to three releases of CruiseControl, the grand daddy of CI systems, and recently had an article on CI and Automated Testing featured in Automated Software Testing magazine.