Friday, July 27, 2018

An Introduction to 2019 Organizers

We find ourselves well into the work towards the European Testing Conference 2019 edition, that will take place in Valencia, Spain on Feb 14-15th. Our Call for Collaboration is open until Aug 19th (give us a chance to get to know *you*), Early Bird Tickets are for sale and all sorts of usual conference buzz is going on.

Who are we then? Who are the people bringing you European Testing Conference 2019? We are all practitioners of software development and testing, running the conference for you as our side project to advance the state of art in testing!

Maaret Pyhäjärvi is a tester and polyglot programmer who recently moved into an Engineering Manager position. No matter the title or activity she works on, it's always about testing in some way. With 25 years of experience in testing and a deep drive to learn more about it, she is the co-founder of European Testing Conference with Adi Bolboaca. She continues to experiment with the conference organizing process with the team. She is in this for improving the world of conferences, and to build practical bridges to testing as we see it - from the perspective of different organizations and roles. She speaks at conferences and scouts for content that need sharing - as a way of connecting with new awesome people.

Franziska (Franzi) Sauerwein is a software crafter working as an Engineering Manager. They're the leading developer in the organizing group, holding up the flag of the areas of testing developers find fascinating. And we've learned so much of those! In addition to being an awesome developer, their focus on collaboration as crafter and understanding of the finer details of how people are included and made feel comfortable makes them a perfect bridge builder. They're active in the SoCraTes community and on the Software Crafters Slack. On top of being all around awesome, Franzi is also sharing lessons as a conference speaker.

Alina Ionescu has been organizing European Testing Conference since it's start and is the heart and mind behind all things visual. In addition to being a brilliant tester who lives and teaches technical testing back and forth, she has a special eye for making everything beautiful. The visuals she creates are wonderful and insightful, and the same happens when collaborating with her. Alina facilitates sessions with the local testing community in her home country Romania, and isn't afraid to step up and share as a speaker / facilitator.

Julia Duran is a second year organizer with a local presence in the country we're visiting in 2019, Spain. She's a test manager with a great vision of what testing is about, keen to always learn more. With this year's conference, it also turns out she is a superb organizer shining our way forward with all the local arrangements we need to learn on as we enter a new country.  With her help, we've learned to sort through new kinds of practices around inclusiveness.

Miroslava Nikolova volunteered for earlier conferences and made an impression as a thoughtful tester and test lead. Her ideas about what makes sense and what people can pick up are invaluable in the process of choosing the right talks for the 2019 edition. She actively brings in the voice of the community, reminds the rest of us on what people say would be of interest and elevates the conference organizing to a new level.

Abigail (Abby) Bangser is a quality consultant turning into a superb observability expert. Her enthusiasm of deep lessons we can share is infectious and she connects pieces of agile, testing and technology is an insightful way. We should have her return as a speaker, as she is awesome at that. But like others amongst the organizers, she has many sides to her and has a superpower of figuring out others and jumping into any task like a fish in the sea.

Marit van Dijk is a software developer with experience in test automation. Her drive for the craft is infectious, and she is making sure it gets distributed well. She's working with open source projects, Cucumber in particular. We are lucky to have her join the organizers team this year, and she's turned out to be the heart and brains of social media communications. While we're happy to organize a conference of our own, we love so much the stuff that others are creating and believe that everyone should have a chance of going to a good conference. Marit delivers that message brilliantly being one of the most connected people and sharing great content online.

We hope to see you at European Testing Conference 2019 in February. We're always up for a good discussion about testing and all things software. This conference comes from a team of practitioners to you - the practitioners. We hope you'll enjoy it as much as we enjoy making it shape.

**any mistakes in the above are sole responsibility of Maaret who decided to write the introductions of people she's delighted to work with on the conference.  

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Closing European Testing Conference 2018 season

European Testing Conference 2018 took place in Amsterdam, the Netherlands February 19-20th. With just a little over 200 participants, our third year was a both a networking/learning and financial success.

We're a non-profit conference out on a mission to change the world of conferences. This means a few things:
  • Our conference is on testing as different roles in software development overall know it. We love testers. We love developers. We love managers. We love product owners. And testing unites us all - we want to know the quality we are delivering, work on better ways towards feedback and figure out what mix of people would help each of us succeed. 
  • Our speakers are not paying to speak. We guarantee we pay their out of pocket expenses with travel and hotel. They are professionals in the industry, that deserve not only to not pay to speak, but in fact be paid to speak. To manage the risk, we pay our speakers with profit sharing model.
  • Our profits over the years are used to advance the speaker pool introducing underrepresented speakers. Financial reasons keep many great teachers local and with conferences not compensating for the travel, we want to figure out scholarships to support these people. With three years of European Testing Conference under our belt, we have supported three speakers by paying their travel for speaking. 
With 2018 edition of European Testing Conference profit-sharing, we pay:
  • 1917 euros for a keynote speaker (45 min - 5 shares)
  • 383 euros for a track speaker (30-40 min - 1 share)
  • 1534 euros for workshop facilitator (2 sessions, 1.5 hours each - 4 shares)
Every speaker gets paid. Including the few who did their first ever talk and worked hard on fine-tuning their delivery with their mentors support.

We believe this is what conferences need to budget for, and continue our mission to build a conference that gets to the long term target: paying keynotes 5000 euros and track speakers 1000 euros.

We believe great work needs to be paid for. We believe that each of the speakers has spent their lifetime becoming the people they are on stage, teaching us from their experiences and that time is valuable. And we know they spend a lot of effort building the message they deliver.

Our organizer team for 2018 consists of:
In addition, 2017 organizers Aki Salmi (Finland) and co-creator of European Testing Conference Adi Bolboaca (Romania) played a significant part. 

Our organizer team is volunteers and we don't get paid a salary. In fact, we are all working as manager, programmers and testers. Changing the world of conferences in a great company is something we do on the side. 

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