There were different ways of testing the software, white box testing and black box testing. In the white box testing, it looks into the covers and into the details of the whole software we created enabling us to see what’s happening inside it. On the other hand, black box testing just looks into the available inputs for the software and what expected outputs are that should result from each input not concerning within the inner work of the software. So this makes a difference of the area they choose to focus on. (www.testplan.com, 7th Feb 2011)
Hence going through the black box testing and white box testing, we as a testing team thought of using black box testing as it its more appropriate for our software which involves security testing and usability testing. So being two persons in the testing team it was easy for us to divide the task. I took usability testing where as my other group mate did security testing.
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As soon as we got the final copy of the working software, I checked the whole software if it works as it says or not. We first had to install a program called WampServer to run our software. I ran the software and checked the web design whether it is user friendly or not. This helps for the ease of use of the software for our customers or the users.
The index page looked like as below:
And the survey page which is the main page looked like one below:
We also have details about the data protection to make sure that this software we created is copyrighted and also mentioned stuff like information we collect from the users, IP addresses and cookies, uses made of the information, users rights, data security and access to information. We also have a page where the users or the customers will know about us.
We also have features for disabled person who have to click “high visibility” in the index page to access it. It is mainly for the people who are suffering from colour blindness or have partial visual impairment so we made the font bigger and used just three colours for the whole website and looked like below:
The above snap shot is of the first page for the disabled users. As we can see that it hasn’t got much of colour contrast and the font are bigger. We have used white and yellow text and blue as the background to avoid visual glairiness because through research we have found that the people with low vision sees this colour more comfortably.
Then we got the survey page whose layout is also similar as the above one.
This is the survey page for the disabled users. We used bigger fonts through the whole webpage and maintained a text format meaning that we have got rid of all the necessary decorations and kept it simple. Both a “Normal” and “High Visibility” web page contains exactly the same information and has the same format. The only difference is in term of graphic so that it provides better visibility.
After testing the usability of the software and modifying the software till it was perfect, it was time for us to conduct the usability testing with other user. Before using the usability testing method we need to understand what usability means. It doesn’t mean to have perfect software with no errors or having good features. It should help the customers or the users to use the software or any other products quickly and easily to gain the goal and hence accomplish the tasks. In this project, our task was to build a micro questionnaire data gather which should consist of a website and database to store the information. This website displays an introductory descriptive paragraph and displays four related questions where one of the questions is the central question and the other three are associated questions whose answers will build up a composite answer which will validate or not any information given to the real question. So the users had to go to the index page, choose which graphic they prefer to use and give answers to the questions.
I chose two methods of usability testing for our software and they are user and expert review.
In this method of testing, I chose 5 different users. Three of them were GCSE level students and two of them were students from the university. The software was ready in my laptop to be used and then told them what they had to do with the software. I also requested them to give some feedback about the website itself. Then all of them started going through the website, looking through the layouts, fonts, colour, etc. This test was done individually in different places. Then they read the question and answered them as per their own thinking. There was one user who used glasses so I asked him to take it off n use the “high visibility” layout if he doesn’t mind and he did. The feedback was quite good as well. He described about the colours and size of the fonts which were of perfect match and even the contrast to the background were easy for them to read. They also gave feedback about the navigation of the website which was pretty much easy.
In this method we involved an expert for inspecting the software. We asked him to examine the whole website and give us feed back. I took started the software and then he examined the whole software.
Feedback from user testing:
The layouts of the website were well presented.
The contrasts of the colour were chosen well.
The colours for the high visibility were chosen well.
It was user friendly.
It was easy to learn how to use it.
Navigations of the software were simple.
It has an appealing layout.
It provided objective information to the users.
Storing of data was effective n efficient.
http://www.testplant.com/download_files/BB_vs_WB_Testing.pdf, 7th Feb 2011
Usability inspection methods, Jakob Nelsen, Sunsoft and Robert L. Mack, IBM T.J. Watson research centre
Interaction design – beyond human computer interaction, second edition, John Wiley and Sons, Ltd
Usability Testing and Research, Carol M. Barnum, Southern Polytechnic State University
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