September 23, 2013

RIMGEA: Wrap-up

Using RIMGEA for the past week has been a great exercise. It certainly improved my bug reports. I didn't get to the point of all my bug reports being fully RIMGEA or the bugs fixes that I reviewed being fully explored using RIMGEA, but I did see a improvement in my bug reports and bug exploration.

Lets look at these two sides of how I used RIMGEA and the challenges that caused me to shortcut using it fully.

RIMGEA as a bug reporting Heuristic:
This is the intended use for this Heuristic, and it works well here. If you are rushed for time, or have a large number of bugs to report, it's unlikely that you will use all of it. For some bugs I didn't get past the R(eplicate). Once I got my replication steps, I could write a convincing bug report.  However, this past week I tried to get further with every bug. My reports were definitely better.  Reducing all the possible variables out for the I(solate) was hard, and often I overlooked some, but looking for them certainly helped my testing in other areas.  I think I'll do this exercise every few weeks until I can consistently get into the last few letters of the Heuristic.  

RIMGEA as a bug verification Heuristic:
This was a bit of an off-label use, but I thought that if the bug hadn't had this done to it when it was written, the fix might not cover all of the incarnations of the bug either. It worked for me. Often replicating the bug in the pre-patched system showed the the bug had been fixed earlier and the new patch wasn't actually needed, or that there were other paths into the bug that had not been examined and fixed.

All in all, this was a productive exercise. I'll do this one again, and share it with my team.

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