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Live from HP Discover in Las Vegas

So here is the dialogue you have with your boss.

“I support the HP software at work, right? The Non Functional Test team depend on me knowing pretty much everything about it. So can I go and see the guys who developed it, talk to the product evangelists, see what’s coming in the future, and perhaps get some free training at their annual conference?”

“Sure, where is it?” replies the guy paying your salary.

Encouraged, you reply, “Las Vegas….”

Terse repost, “Not a chance, get out of here”.

So why is HP Discover in Vegas?

I asked HP the question, “Why Vegas? Surely you’d get more attendance if it wasn’t such a ‘glitzy’ place?” The answer was simple, there isn’t anywhere else in the world that can easily cope with an influx of more than 10,000 delegates.

Sitting on the 33rd floor of the Palazzo Hotel, looking out past Trump tower towards Red Rock National Conservation Area, this is easy to understand. Outside is a city built for servicing tourists, delegates, dignitaries and thrill seekers.  There are over 100,000 hotel beds in Las Vegas. Hmm ….. that’s some laundry.

HP Discover is all about sharing knowledge and meeting people.  Admittedly, I was drafted in to help deliver one of Vivit’s pre-conference ‘deep dive’ training sessions with Wilson Mar on Monday. But I also had the opportunity to talk to influential people in our industry. On Tuesday, I took the opportunity to have lunch with Shane Evans – the HP Product Manager for LoadRunner.

Testing needs to be done earlier

We discussed the challenges facing LoadRunner users and asked what HP is doing to overcome them. HP has commissioned a great deal of research, and asked their customers what they want.

The answer is clear! Businesses need to change more quickly than ever before; people are accessing systems from devices on the move, more frequently and at different times than traditionally they have done. Moving testing earlier in the application lifecycle and doing more performance testing of mobile applications is key to succeeding in this rapidly changing world.

Mobile Testing. Is enough being done?

How many organisations collect statistics about what devices are accessing their public sites? Shane thinks not enough! Because of this, mobile platforms aren’t being tested sufficiently. Mobile testing is much more complex than conventional browser testing because you have a wider variety of factors, many of which are beyond your control. Mobile apps behave differently from straight web protocols too. Device software stack, mobile device specification, mobile network speed, network contention and different carrier formats are all in the mix.

I was reassured by Shane that their network virtualisation tools (acquired from Shunra in March this year) are mature and fit for purpose.  The new offerings for mobile performance testing also look to address the remainder. Shane suggested I should see the Mobile section of the conference to find out more.

So I wandered down to speak to the enthusiastic Jay on the mobile stand. He was keen to give me the lowdown and HP’s latest news. Launched this week at Discover 2014, is HP Mobile on Premise. Just plug the device into a USB port, load the app, and HP Mobile TruClient will record the app traffic as a script. Add the script to a LoadRunner test scenario and it runs on an injector (load generator) like a norla web script to simulate user load. If you want to run on the actual device, you will need Unified Functional Test script in your test, just like the old days with Quick Test Pro (QTP) – ahh those were the days.

"It's guys like you that can show them the way"

So Shane’s problem is that businesses are not following the right approach and don’t always understand the offerings which would allow them to follow best Q.A. practices for mobile devices. As he says, “it’s guys like you [Trust IV] that can show them the way.”

So why come to HP Discover? I get to see the very latest product offerings, talk to the product architects, and have lunch with the head of product for my area of expertise. Pretty cool…..

….and the conversation with the boss? Well, thankfully it was a short one, involving a mirror.

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