by Denis Tishchenko
A simple request for a Post-It note in the office last week led to an interesting discussion. The Post-It is an example of a product that was originally designed with something completely different in mind. It got us to thinking about the hidden benefits of all the other household names and products that we take for granted, but were originally designed, or marketed, as something else.
This reminded one of our JDE developers of how he uses our SwifTest™ tool for a different purpose than it was originally created for. He shared with us this handy tip:
“A customer reported an issue to me a while ago. In order to reproduce it, I needed to go through quite a few steps before I could even see the issue. So, it takes me about 2-3 minutes just to get to the point where I can see the bug. When I’m fixing the code, I need to return to this point again and again to test the fix.
Using SwifTest, it only takes 30 seconds to get to the point from which I want to start testing the application. This saves me at least 2 minutes each time I use it, so if I run it 20 times I save 40 minutes. And that’s just one small task – I have a lot of similar tasks.”
In addition to the time saved, using SwifTest eliminates the boredom and frustration associated with having to repeat a set of actions over and over again. It also reduces the risks associated with human error. In this particular instance, the error was only reproduced when a specific value was entered. If the value was 19.09, instead of 19.08, the error would not occur.
“Although this is hard to measure in terms of savings it certainly feels like we are working smarter.”
SwifTest already makes a tester’s life easier but with this use of the tool, developers can also benefit from the application. This not only makes some of the developer’s job a little easier, it also means that when the developer submits the fix to the tester, the tester can reuse the script as well.
Unlike these examples, SwifTest also does what it was initially designed to do!
In 1957 bubble wrap was designed as ultimate wallpaper and then marketed as greenhouse insulation, before a marketer at Sealed Air used it as the wrapper for IBM’s 1401 computer.
Coca-Cola’s original purpose was to combat anxiety, headaches and drug dependence.
In 1968, someone trying to create super strong adhesives for the aerospace industry instead created an extremely weak, pressure-sensitive adhesive which, years later, another employee used for holding papers together.
While perfecting a coal tar derivative, the inventor noticed that his food was much sweeter than usual and discovered that it was the residue on his hands of the coal tar derivative.
Harry Coover invented cyanoacrylate (the main component in super glue) as a special extra-clear plastic suitable for gun sights and airplane canopies. Years later it was used on the battlefield as makeshift wound sealer, and now for home repair. Some variations are employed in orthopaedic surgery and dental procedures.
So, if you are running SwifTest and have an internal development team, you can get a little extra benefit from it.