Software Testing without Requirements

Michael Rielly

September 02, 2010

Are you doing embedded software testing on the fly and without requirements? Software Testing Times posted an article this month on software testing without requirements. The article discusses some common risks and issues developers face while testing software without requirements and how outlines alternative ways of testing.

Software Testing Times: On the fly development, pressurized deadlines, changing user requirements, legacy systems, large systems, varied requirements and many more are known influences for many a project manager to discard or not update the functional specification document. While a project manager/requirements manager may be aware of the system requirements, this can cause havoc for an independent test team.

There are a host of reason why some development organizations test without requirements. But testing without knowledge of the requirements is like putting the cart before the horse. You simply cannot determine if a program is functioning as designed or if required functionality is missing. A clear knowledge of the requirements before starting testing, is the only way to ensure predictable software operation -- especially when testing safety critical systems like aerospace, avionics, and railway.