Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Performance Testing Confusion

Among the huge number of things that I have little knowledge of is performance testing. Interestingly, I find that I am in a position to view the development and execution of a performance test. I'll concede that the parties I have as the models are probably not of the highest caliber but then you use what you have. Anyway, these are some of the observations I've made:
  • It requires a special skill
  • Strategy documents are superior to check lists
  • Results don't need to be in context
  • Execution only needs to be outlined
  • Data should be someone else's problem
I've never yet encountered a document that could replace the convenience and ease of reference that can be accomplished by a check list where the information being tracked is growing and evolving at each step. Consequently, I disagree with this notion.

No contextualization of the results? Kidding... surely? A summary may be sufficient but then a summary contains a "summary" of the explicitly rendered results. Wait though. There are more graphs than text. That must count right? I mean each has a useful description like "the transactions per second graph shows the number of transactions per second"... epic.

Baseline, load and soak will be run. That is an execution plan? Sure. Short and to the point. What though will happen as time gets shorter and problems refuse to get resolved? Contingencies? Eerie.

Data obviously can't belong to someone else. Surreal.

Skills. My current view is... that I need more input here although its probably QED.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Is male sex the weaker?

Eve (Temptation)Image via Wikipedia A potentially contentious thought as its quite contrary to commonly accepted ideas.

Males are commonly more heavily muscled and taller than their female counterparts. These differences mean that females are frequently regarded as being weaker than men. These arguments can be considered to be sexist and therefore of no consequence.

As illogical as the argument is, it is still taken as being fact. A point to dispute the assertion, is that females generally outlive men by 5 to 10 years (at least in western societies). Surely this indicates that the male is flawed or at least weaker?

There are low level differences between the sexes and these can account for the variation in lifespan. These factors are looked at by the scientific community. Put in perspective, the scientific variables point to fact that the sexes are equal except that factors that make up a male result in his body being worn out before hers.

There is another less attractive proposition. In the past childbirth was a pretty dangerous occupation for both the woman and the child. The large number of deaths would have had an impact on the surviving females. Charles Darwin pointed out that evolution was based on the concept of natural selection.

So has society in the past had an impact on the human species? Have we effectively practiced selective breeding by caring more for boy children in the past so as to ensure that they survived through to maturity? Has the predilection of the paternalistic society put males at a disadvantage?

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Sunday, August 3, 2008

JavaScript to Generate Data

JavaScript is a pretty powerful scripting language. Tied in to DHTML it provides a means of dynamically controlling a page. The control can result in something that could almost be called an application.

Having found that PHP had limitations for generating data, I decided to work on a version under JavaScript. I can't say that it's totally complete - doesn't do numbers, dates, or fixed length strings with a fill character - but it was some fun to complete.

Another good reason to use JavaScript, is that it can be used to both in an active web page, and as a standalone tool (through a browser) with little need to actually make any modifications. The supporting tools add extra value - JSMin to reduce the web version of the library and JSLint to verify that the code is correct.

While this tool works for its limited string options, there are number of opportunities for improvement. Even a little code prettifying would be good - let alone separating into object components for reusability.

Zemanta Pixie