When we last left our hero, who was becoming tired, it was In Tallinn. But at Nordic Testing Days, the good thing was that after my “Playwright Introduction” tutorial, which was on Wednesday, the first day, I had all the time for myself to enjoy the conference.

Well, that and prepare for the next week, because that was an intense one. Two conferences, in two countries, in one week.

Arriving at EuroSTAR testing conference at Stockholmassan

The road woud take me to Stockholm, Sweden on Sunday, and I had a day to get ready for my half-day tutorial on Tuesday. That’s me in front of Stockholmassan, the home of EuroSTART ’24.

The picture is from Tuesday morning, and as you can see, there was no sign of all the rain that was going to come down on us later. My half-day tutorial was “Exploration Testing with Postman“. Unlike the week before, people came prepared to the workshop, but it turned out more about the exploration than Postman. As long as things are interactive, and people learn, I’m ok with that.

Tutorial day is low on traffic, and after my tutorial (still waiting for the pictures!). I relaxed, and worked a bit. Yeah, that’s how I roll. Then off to the very wet speaker’s dinner.

The next day, I gave my second talk, and this time it was “API Test Planning Live!” (You can see an old recording here).

My API Test Planning Live talk at EuroSTAR Testing Conference at Stockholm

That’s me on the stage, and lots of people shouting. I love this session, because it’s so interactive. The bigger the crowd, and you can see how big it is, they have to shout louder. And shouting louder they did. What you see on the screen in the back, are different cases of testing a calculator through APIs, that the audience came up with.

I didn’t spend much time in EuroSTAR, as I was flying out the next day. I did enjoy Abigail Couchi‘s keynote “Helping Others through My Craft” and Torvald Mårtensson “Testing the Gripen E Fighter Aircraft”. Which was actually about testing!

Something about testing conferences lately…

Ok, here’s my criticism, not of just EuroSTAR – but for many testing conferences. I wish there were more testing talks. It’s nice to have talks about diversity, and how to be a leader without leadership skills. There were many talks on how to be a better tester, e.g. self improvement, but not enough about getting better at the craft. I’m not sure these things are a good hook for companies to send their people to a testing conference.

Oh, and of course, you got to have talks about AI, right? I think we’re at the end of the hype wave, and I’m relieved. Still lots of AI talks, and how it won’t take our jobs. Probably.

Final Lag – Romanian Testing Conference

Then I got RTC in Cluj-Napoca. It’s a smaller conference, but a lovely one. I got here at the end of the conference (tutorial day was the real last day, I got on mid 2nd day of the conference). I didn’t see too many talks, but the one I saw there was worth it. Daniel Nillson‘s “Bring the tester’s toolbox to the world of AI-based systems”. Which is very long name for experiences from testing self-driving, AI-based cars.

This talk was an actual empirical report on what its like testing self-driving cars. How success and failure are defined, and how we don’t trust results in the beginning, how to modify our expeiments and how to deal with surprises. I mean, like, real testing of AI-based products.

After the day, a bunch of us went for some Japanese food.

7 course Japanese dinner with Speakers at Romanian Testing Conference

In the picture: Daniel Nillson, Nicole Van Der Hoeven and Leandro Melendez.

Apart from this amazing Japanese food experience, what you don’t see there is the amount of rain that dropped in less than two hours, and you don’t here the alarms going off from phones, warning people not to step outside for fears of flooding.

The next day, I gave my whole day “Dirty Talks” workshop, to a smaller, yet elite audience. We refactored tests, and beat the legacy and cruft out of them. At the end of the day, the tests were sparkling.

Here’s a somewhat tired me explaining about clean code.

Dirty Tests Workshop at Romanian Testing Conference

It was great meeting again with friends Huib Schoots, Paul Holland, Lalit Bhamare and Ashley Hunsberger. Got some great recommendation for fantasy and sci-fi books.

My last day, I actually got to do some sight-seeing in Cluj. The highlight was visiting the Steampunk Museum. Here’s the typewriter I asmost used to write this post.

A Lovecraftian typewriter Steampunk Museum in Cluj after Romanian Testing conference

And with my last bits of strength, I stumbled back to the plane and went home for some R&R. for a day or two.

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