Chapter 11: Testing for World-Readiness
From previous chapters, you know that creating a world-ready application is a possible task and a desired goal. However, as you've seen, world-readiness is not guaranteed just because the target platform or the technologies used are world-ready-the whole design and development process must be globalized to achieve world-readiness. This need for globalization extends to software quality assurance (QA) processes as well.
Though the primary thrust of this chapter is on testing, the scope of the QA organization extends beyond this. Included under its umbrella is a wide array of tasks, such as reviewing architectural design and code, creating review processes, defining practices that will improve the development process, and even gathering marketing information. Generally, employees scattered throughout the company perform most of these QA tasks, rather than a dedicated team (as is usually the case with testing on larger projects). The individual processes that make up QA differ from company to company; consequently, this chapter cannot readily address or account for all the varying procedures in place within companies. However, the one common denominator among the QA organizations within these companies involves the testing process, which is generally handled in a fairly similar manner. For this reason, this chapter focuses primarily on making the testing aspect within the QA organizations world-ready.
While QA in all its varying facets must be globalized if you want to ensure world-readiness, legacy testing processes will require the most adjustments to achieve this very attainable goal. The nature of these changes basically involves adding another layer to the test process that was established without globalization in mind-namely, requiring that all design documents, practices, and procedures be world-ready. It is not always an easy task, as implications and requirements of going global might not be obvious in the development process, but it is essential given the limitations of legacy testing processes. (See "The World-Ready Approach to Testing" later in this chapter.)
This chapter will help you organize and implement your test process to further the development of a world-ready product. First and foremost, you'll need to globalize your test and, only if you plan to localize, conduct localizability testing and localization testing. To lay the proper foundation for carrying out a globalized test, the chapter will first help you understand the problems with legacy testing methods in terms of having a QA organization that is world-ready. It will look at the far-reaching benefits associated with globalizing existing tests and point out general areas of functionality that might have globalization problems. (See the "Sample International Test Cases" at the end of this chapter for further areas of functionality that you can test.) Technical solutions (such as how to actually detect and recognize specific globalization problems) follow this foundation. Finally, you'll see the purpose and scope of localizability testing and localization testing, ways to perform them, and the role of tools in today's test world.