Well – today I spend time with the QA department. Kind funny really because last night the team released the external beta of WFBS v5.0 (aka CSM 5.0). Max and Eric from the QA team walked me through the development cycle from a QA perspective. I got to understand the stages of development from Pre-Alpha through to GM release (final shipping product).
One of the most interesting things that I found out was that Trend have made a change to the way they do the development and sustaining engineering side of things. Previously (and I think like most companies), Trend had two teams – one for the development of new product, and the other for the development of bug fixes to existing products. Trend have now done away with the Sustaining Engineering team – merging them with the Development team. This puts more responsibility on the engineers to not only build the product correctly from the start, but also to consider that once it has gone to a GM release that they still need to worry about maintaining any fixes and resolutions to the product. They guys say that this new method does increase their desire to make it right the first time rather than make it some one else’s problem.
Later in the day I was asked to do real world QA testing. In this mode, I actually took the released build of WFBS 5.0 and installed it on the server that runs the SBSfaq.com web sites and a few other sites I support (it’s SBS 2003 R2 Premium). During the installation I found a minor fault which was mostly due to something that I had done (I had deleted some temp files that I should not have), but even so the QA guys realised that maybe they should take this scenario into account and better handle the situation which is great. This type of real world scenario is something that they need to see so that they can build a more robust product.
In the evening (and the reason for the delayed post today), I was invited to Trends 20th Anniversary celebration party. This was held in a massive gym hall which I’m told is the only place in Taipei they could fit the 1500 Trend staff and family. Trend founders Eva and Jenny Cheng were present to be part of the ceremony and give away gifts to lucky staff members. At one point 15 Apple MacBook Air were given away to the cheers of the Trend staff. A slip up by Eva meant instead of giving away 2 prizes of $2000, she said 10 prizes – she of course kept to her word to rapturous applause.
What stood out for me at this event was that the entertainment for the night was provided by Trend staff. We had Jecy from the HIE team doing a number of the introductions during the night, and then later a massive performance other groups including a percussion performance in the photo. Not only did these people play instruments but they got up and did a pretty cool dance too. Charlene and Kathy from the HIE team were part of this performance. I was amazed at the talent of these people and their enthusiasm – wow! Apparently they didn’t hire an events company to handle the night, they did it all themselves!
Thank you for inviting me to be a guest at this special event for you.