Top critical review
Read This Book Only in Addition to Others
April 21, 2003
This book should not be read in isolation, especially by a new/newly ordained test engineer or test manager. It suggests approaches to testing that are in conflict with the Testing Life Cycle as contained in IEEE Standard 829, the Standard for Software Test Documentation. A reader would do well to first read "Systematic Software Testing" by Rick Craig and Stefan Jaskiel. Ms. Dustin seems to concentrate on developing Test Procedures and plays down the critical subject of Test Design. Also, though not labeled as such, much of this book seems aimed at testing in the web environment, as opposed to testing non-web systems (e.g., client-server, mainframe) or safety critical systems.
This book offers several excellent points, such as Early Test Planning and discussion of the Test Environment, but tends to use terminology (e.g., test harness) that is used differently elsewhere in the software industry. Since the book doesn't contain a glossary, this can lead to reader confusion. The author's section on Test Automation is well-done, which one would expect from an industry-recognized test automation expert.
There seem to be several misleading items in this book, including the author's definition of "Black Box" testing. Elsewhere in the software industry, this means "Requirements-Based" testing, but the author defines it as "Validating correct behavior only by viewing the output of the user interface." This seems to be significantly restrictive in scope. The author also seems to concentrate on the requirements-verification-testing aspect of unit testing, while playing down the structural, white-box aspect of unit testing.