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A Beginner’s Guide to Test Automation – ReadWrite



A Beginner's Guide to Test Automation - ReadWrite

If you’ve ever been even slightly involved in the development of software, you may have heard the phrase “test automation” knocking about. But what exactly is test automation? Why do organizations use it, and what benefits do they gain from implementing it? Does automating tests mean that manual testing is now redundant? We have the answers to these questions and more, right here.

What is Test Automation?

The Techopedia definition goes like this:

Automated testing or test automation is a method in software testing that makes use of special software tools to control the execution of tests and then compares actual test results with predicted or expected results. All of this is done automatically with little or no intervention from the test engineer. Automation is used to add additional testing that may be too difficult to perform manually.

If you have a cross-functional agile team, then using agile software testing can significantly benefit your development process and the product lifecycle.

Automation vs. Manual Testing

Increasing automated testing doesn’t necessarily mean that manual testing is redundant; in fact, it is far from it. These two types of testing complement each other perfectly. Whereas manual testing is ideal for specific areas of the testing process (such as discovery or usability testing), other regions are repetitive, and manually testing these can be time-consuming for businesses.

So when it comes to parts of the process like regression and function testing, automating these areas both speeds up the process and allows the manual testers to focus more closely on the areas that benefit from a human-centered approach.

The Benefits of Test Automation

If you are considering implementing test automation, it’s helpful to consider the benefits that test automation can bring:

  • Costs – automating repetitive tests will save you money in the long run. Once you have the initial scripts for testing, you can then use them for as long as they are relevant. So, don’t look at just the setup cost, but how that cost is spread over time.
  • Speed – it won’t surprise you to learn that automation saves you time. Automated tests can be executed quickly and can be repeated over and over again. As a result, you will get valid results within hours rather than days or weeks.
  • Time – because you can do things quicker, you save development time. That means your test cycle is shorter, you can release to the market faster, and it is easier to make changes and updates to your product.
  • Productivity – because the tests are automated, you can run them at night or during downtime. QA testers can then review results the next day and rerun tests or move onto the next stage. It also frees them up to focus on more pressing tasks.
  • Accuracy – automation reduces the number of errors and bugs in any software. Even your most experienced staff may make a mistake when manual testing; that simply won’t happen with an automated process. Whether you’re making state of the art software for call centers, or developing the optimal tech stack for startups, being able to look at QA metrics in agile testing helps you create high-quality software.
  • Continuous testing – if you want to adopt continuous testing and delivery, then automation is essential. While it may get complex as time goes on, there are fantastic AI solutions that help you manage your automation testing processes.
  • Feedback loop – there is nothing more frustrating than launching software onto the market only for bugs or errors to be discovered by customers. The beauty of test automation is that you can speedily test solutions and fixes and update your software to keep customers happy.
  • Improvement – being able to implement process improvement is something that can help your company grow and develop, and that can mean more significant revenue.

Types of automated tests

In reality, there are so many different types of automated tests that we could fill libraries with these test types. However, to provide you with a starting point, here are some of the most common:

  • Smoke testing – this type of testing checks whether your build is stable. It checks that your essential features all work as they should and allows for more testing, so they should be prioritized.
  • Unit testing – seen as the first level of testing for apps; this is where the individual units are tested. The tests can be written by either developers or automation testers.
  • Functional testing – this type of testing ensures that all the different functions of your product operate as planned and expected. As well as overall functionality, this can include factors such as the user interface, security, APIs, and database functionality.
  • Integration testing – knowing that the different modules of your product integrate well together is essential. Integration testing checks that your modules work well together and that data easily communicates between each modular system.
  • Regression testing – it’s doubtful that you will go through the whole development process without changes or code tweaking. Regression testing checks that any such changes do not affect how your product functions.

The Takeaway

When it comes to automated software testing, most organizations choose to outsource much – if not all – of the testing process to crowd testing experts. However, companies like Global App Testing can help automate your testing processes to obtain accurate results as quickly as possible.

Just as you would adhere to Google Analytics to ensure your SEO is optimized, you would utilize test automation to prepare new products for the market or to tweak existing ones that may have a few issues.

If you look at any RPA (Robot Process Automation) that might already exist within your systems, you will find that there is a close relationship between RPA and automated testing. As software development becomes more complex, and as consumers become more demanding, automated testing is the solution all development teams need.

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Fintech Kennek raises $12.5M seed round to digitize lending



Google eyed for $2 billion Anthropic deal after major Amazon play

London-based fintech startup Kennek has raised $12.5 million in seed funding to expand its lending operating system.

According to an Oct. 10 report, the round was led by HV Capital and included participation from Dutch Founders Fund, AlbionVC, FFVC, Plug & Play Ventures, and Syndicate One. Kennek offers software-as-a-service tools to help non-bank lenders streamline their operations using open banking, open finance, and payments.

The platform aims to automate time-consuming manual tasks and consolidate fragmented data to simplify lending. Xavier De Pauw, founder of Kennek said:

“Until kennek, lenders had to devote countless hours to menial operational tasks and deal with jumbled and hard-coded data – which makes every other part of lending a headache. As former lenders ourselves, we lived and breathed these frustrations, and built kennek to make them a thing of the past.”

The company said the latest funding round was oversubscribed and closed quickly despite the challenging fundraising environment. The new capital will be used to expand Kennek’s engineering team and strengthen its market position in the UK while exploring expansion into other European markets. Barbod Namini, Partner at lead investor HV Capital, commented on the investment:

“Kennek has developed an ambitious and genuinely unique proposition which we think can be the foundation of the entire alternative lending space. […] It is a complicated market and a solution that brings together all information and stakeholders onto a single platform is highly compelling for both lenders & the ecosystem as a whole.”

The fintech lending space has grown rapidly in recent years, but many lenders still rely on legacy systems and manual processes that limit efficiency and scalability. Kennek aims to leverage open banking and data integration to provide lenders with a more streamlined, automated lending experience.

The seed funding will allow the London-based startup to continue developing its platform and expanding its team to meet demand from non-bank lenders looking to digitize operations. Kennek’s focus on the UK and Europe also comes amid rising adoption of open banking and open finance in the regions.

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Radek Zielinski

Radek Zielinski is an experienced technology and financial journalist with a passion for cybersecurity and futurology.

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Fortune 500’s race for generative AI breakthroughs



Deanna Ritchie

As excitement around generative AI grows, Fortune 500 companies, including Goldman Sachs, are carefully examining the possible applications of this technology. A recent survey of U.S. executives indicated that 60% believe generative AI will substantially impact their businesses in the long term. However, they anticipate a one to two-year timeframe before implementing their initial solutions. This optimism stems from the potential of generative AI to revolutionize various aspects of businesses, from enhancing customer experiences to optimizing internal processes. In the short term, companies will likely focus on pilot projects and experimentation, gradually integrating generative AI into their operations as they witness its positive influence on efficiency and profitability.

Goldman Sachs’ Cautious Approach to Implementing Generative AI

In a recent interview, Goldman Sachs CIO Marco Argenti revealed that the firm has not yet implemented any generative AI use cases. Instead, the company focuses on experimentation and setting high standards before adopting the technology. Argenti recognized the desire for outcomes in areas like developer and operational efficiency but emphasized ensuring precision before putting experimental AI use cases into production.

According to Argenti, striking the right balance between driving innovation and maintaining accuracy is crucial for successfully integrating generative AI within the firm. Goldman Sachs intends to continue exploring this emerging technology’s potential benefits and applications while diligently assessing risks to ensure it meets the company’s stringent quality standards.

One possible application for Goldman Sachs is in software development, where the company has observed a 20-40% productivity increase during its trials. The goal is for 1,000 developers to utilize generative AI tools by year’s end. However, Argenti emphasized that a well-defined expectation of return on investment is necessary before fully integrating generative AI into production.

To achieve this, the company plans to implement a systematic and strategic approach to adopting generative AI, ensuring that it complements and enhances the skills of its developers. Additionally, Goldman Sachs intends to evaluate the long-term impact of generative AI on their software development processes and the overall quality of the applications being developed.

Goldman Sachs’ approach to AI implementation goes beyond merely executing models. The firm has created a platform encompassing technical, legal, and compliance assessments to filter out improper content and keep track of all interactions. This comprehensive system ensures seamless integration of artificial intelligence in operations while adhering to regulatory standards and maintaining client confidentiality. Moreover, the platform continuously improves and adapts its algorithms, allowing Goldman Sachs to stay at the forefront of technology and offer its clients the most efficient and secure services.

Featured Image Credit: Photo by Google DeepMind; Pexels; Thank you!

Deanna Ritchie

Managing Editor at ReadWrite

Deanna is the Managing Editor at ReadWrite. Previously she worked as the Editor in Chief for Startup Grind and has over 20+ years of experience in content management and content development.

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UK seizes web3 opportunity simplifying crypto regulations



Deanna Ritchie

As Web3 companies increasingly consider leaving the United States due to regulatory ambiguity, the United Kingdom must simplify its cryptocurrency regulations to attract these businesses. The conservative think tank Policy Exchange recently released a report detailing ten suggestions for improving Web3 regulation in the country. Among the recommendations are reducing liability for token holders in decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) and encouraging the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to adopt alternative Know Your Customer (KYC) methodologies, such as digital identities and blockchain analytics tools. These suggestions aim to position the UK as a hub for Web3 innovation and attract blockchain-based businesses looking for a more conducive regulatory environment.

Streamlining Cryptocurrency Regulations for Innovation

To make it easier for emerging Web3 companies to navigate existing legal frameworks and contribute to the UK’s digital economy growth, the government must streamline cryptocurrency regulations and adopt forward-looking approaches. By making the regulatory landscape clear and straightforward, the UK can create an environment that fosters innovation, growth, and competitiveness in the global fintech industry.

The Policy Exchange report also recommends not weakening self-hosted wallets or treating proof-of-stake (PoS) services as financial services. This approach aims to protect the fundamental principles of decentralization and user autonomy while strongly emphasizing security and regulatory compliance. By doing so, the UK can nurture an environment that encourages innovation and the continued growth of blockchain technology.

Despite recent strict measures by UK authorities, such as His Majesty’s Treasury and the FCA, toward the digital assets sector, the proposed changes in the Policy Exchange report strive to make the UK a more attractive location for Web3 enterprises. By adopting these suggestions, the UK can demonstrate its commitment to fostering innovation in the rapidly evolving blockchain and cryptocurrency industries while ensuring a robust and transparent regulatory environment.

The ongoing uncertainty surrounding cryptocurrency regulations in various countries has prompted Web3 companies to explore alternative jurisdictions with more precise legal frameworks. As the United States grapples with regulatory ambiguity, the United Kingdom can position itself as a hub for Web3 innovation by simplifying and streamlining its cryptocurrency regulations.

Featured Image Credit: Photo by Jonathan Borba; Pexels; Thank you!

Deanna Ritchie

Managing Editor at ReadWrite

Deanna is the Managing Editor at ReadWrite. Previously she worked as the Editor in Chief for Startup Grind and has over 20+ years of experience in content management and content development.

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