I've spent most of my 20 years in the software and hardware business in the arena of testing. For the first few years as a test practitioner, I struggled to keep my head above water. Ultimately, I mastered some basic tools and techniques.

As I learned more about testing, I started to notice certain common themes. Some of these themes had to do with events—good and bad—that happened over and over again on software, hardware, and system projects. For some of these events, I found that some teams could create order in their projects. These teams handled these common events better than the teams that bounced from one crisis to the next, reacting constantly, immersed in chaos. The successful teams had good processes.

Some of these successful ...

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