A-Z Challenge Postings - Page 2
|Earliest: April 1, 2016||Latest: May 2, 2021||Total: 133|
About 56 miles west of Boston is Old Sturbridge Village, a re-creation of a typical New England village of the early 1800s. Old Sturbridge Village is a way to look back on how life was in New England between the years 1790 and 1840.
The largest outdoor history museum in the Northeast - a great place for the whole family to learn about history.
Fun Facts About Old Sturbridge Village
Open to guests on June 8, 1946.
The whole concept was created by Albert B. Wells. He didn't see It open as he had a heart attack and moved to California.
Today there are 40 antique buildings spread out over 200 acres. Among the buildings are homes, shops, a meeting house and schoolhouse.
The graveyard is not a real one, but the gravestones were real. They are old gravestones from other cemeteries that are donated to Old Sturbridge Village. Many of these gravestones were being replaced at the original location. In some instances, the bodies that were buried at the original gravesite were missing.
The Vermont Covered Bridge is a great place to take pictures in the fall. This is one of 12 covered bridges that are still in use in Massachusetts.
Near the Freeman Farmhouse are some apple trees, another great family pictures spot. This is great any time of the year.
You can buy iron goods made at the Blacksmith in the general store. Supplies are limited. All nails that are used in the Village come from the Blacksmith. When you visit the Blacksmith shop, you can ask for some old nails - if they have enough stock they may give you one!
Sunday Brunch at the Village is a great place to stop by for Brunch. We have enjoyed going here for a nice quiet classic New England meal. The food is great and if it's a nice day, going through the Village afterward is a fun way to spend the day with family.
Red Hot Timer
Having a timer is one way to keep the focus on what needs to be done. It's a way to stay on track and get things done.
You can buy a timer to put at your desk so that you can see how much time is left. The good thing is that the timer isn't using any computer resources. In addition, it's good if you want to track time away from the computer.
On the iPhone, Apple's Clock has a good timer. Otherwise, any good 50 Minute Visual Timer would be good to have next to your home desk.
Red Hot Timer
On the Mac, the Red Hot Timer app is a fast and easy way to set up a timer. You can set the timer from the system menu bar and it will show you the most active time.
Screenshots of the Red Hot Timer App
Five Things I like About the Timer
- In the preferences panel you can set up a predefined time for whatever purposes, and that will appear in the drop-down menu in the menu bar. So you can set up how long it takes to do a computer build, and set the timer and then check it when the time expires.
- You can run multiple timers. The timer that is about to expire first is the one that appears in the menu bar.
- There is a count down and a count-up mode. The count up is useful when you're tracking the amount of time before the release.
- You get 6 timers for "free" to try the application, in the purchase panel there's an offer to try it for a month. If you find it useful you can buy a yearly subscription for $2.99.
- There are several options on what happens when the timer ends. If the computer is on mute, the Timer application will become the front most active application.
QA Interview Questions
Due to the world-wide slowdown, some QA Engineers are now looking for new jobs. Being prepared for a job interview can really help make or break your chances of working with the company.
Over the years, I have collected a lot of useful interview questions. Here are a few that I keep seeing over and over, they may appear in different forms.
Sample QA Interview Questions
Sample Interview Questions that you may get asked:
Tell me about yourself.
This is an open-ended questioned. This is your chance to sell them on who you are and what value you bring to the position.
What is your experience working with Engineering?
Another open-ended question to see how you communicate with other teams.
Describe the type of QA testing have you done.
Don't just throw out terms, like Regression and Automation. Explain what you did in these environments. Come with specific examples of where your actions made a difference or talk about which testing that you enjoy working with.
What are some examples of pushing back when testing a ticket/issue?
Give an example of where you challenged a developer over an issue that you found. Explain why you felt it was an issue and what you did to push the issue forward. Don't make up a story, as you may be asked the same question by different people that are involved in the interview process.
When you audit other QA engineers work, what type of things are you looking for?
If you don't do any code reviews, talk about your team communications. Don't forget your stand-ups, team meetings, and Slack chats. Explain how you're an active participant to the QA team.
Can you give an example of how you handled testing a functionality when there were no specs.
This question is a test of your ticket ownership and how you manage issues. Talk about specific examples where testing an issue didn't go as planned - at least for the developer.
What do you do on a day to day basis?
Another open-ended question. This is usually asked to see what involvement you have with the team. If your applying for a leadership position, make sure to mention the various managerial tasks. If your applying for a technical position, make sure to talk about doing technical research and other tasks.
Personal Daily Planner
With a lot of people working from home, it can be difficult to plan out your day. One way to help is a daily planner and the On Planners is a great resource to start.
Pick out a Daily Planner that works for you and every morning fill out the schedule what people have going on. This way everyone knows when to be quiet during meetings. In addition, you'll know when Internet bandwidth might be busy - so people can stop Netflix watching.
There's a lot of good planners on OnPlanners and there's certainly a good planner for your needs.
For those who love handwriting and prefer analog tools over digital devices, we suggest that you try to start planning your life, work and time using simple daily planners and daily agendas. However, often it?s not that easy to find the planner that totally meets your needs and helps you achieve your goals easily. It?s not necessary to look for a planner even though you want to plan your day with pen and paper.
Because there is a better solution: printable planner templates. Here you can find more than 10 printable daily planners. All available in PDF. Sorry, no template excel here. Because we believe in the power of handwriting.
Planner templates work well for tracking your everyday meetings, events and reminders about the important dates, upcoming holidays and birthdays.
Open Search via LaunchBar
LaunchBar Makes it easy to search 48 different sites. You simply involke the keyboard shortcut and then type the search engine that you want. It’s quick and easy way to perform searches between different search engines.
Here's a quick overview of using LaunchBar to do a search. I use Google Image in this example because it's a fast way to go to Google Image section.
Available Search Sites in LaunchBar
Abbreviation Search, Amazon Deutschland, Apple Developer Connection, Ask.com, Bing, Bing Images, Cocoa Mailing List Archive, Connect to Local AFP Server, Convert EUR to USD, Convert USD to EUR, DuckDuckGo, ebay, Excite, Go to, Google Blog Search, Google Exact Phrase, Google Face Search, Google Groups, Google Images, Google Japan, Google Maps, Google Videos, Internet Movie Database, last.fm, LEO English-German Dictionary, Linguee, Lucky Google, Mac OS X HInts, MacUpdate, Make TinyURL, Manual Page, Merriam-Webster Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Thesaurus, OpenThesaurus, PHP Documentation, Search Amazon for Books, Search Amazon for DVDs, Search Amazon for Music, Search Amazon.com, Search iTunes Store, Search iTunes Store for Album, Search iTunes Store for Artist, Search iTunes Store for Composer, Search iTunes Store for Song, Technorati Search, Wolfram Alpha, Xcode Mailing List Archive, Yahoo!, Yahoo! Images, Yahoo! Japan, Yahoo! Stock Quote, Yahoo! Video, YouTube
On the big hill, known as Flag Staff Hill, on the Boston Common is the Soldiers and Sailors Monument. It’s there to remember Massachusetts soldiers who died in the Civil War.
Near the monument is a special memorial to the Nurses of the Armed Services.
Three Fun Facts of the Memorial
Memorial was installed on November 11, 1959 - the 41st anniversary of the end of World War One.
The monument was placed 82 years after the larger Soldiers and Sailors monument (it was dedicated on September 17, 1877)
American Legion #296 is located in Fort Wayne, Indiana
More Information to Be Discovered
There isn’t much online about this monument. I wasn’t able to find out anything about the boulder that the sign is hanging on or how the monument came to be.
I'll do some additional research at the Boston Public Library once it reopens and then update this blog post.
Sign on the Boulder
In Memory of the Nurses of the Armed Services
Massachusetts All Nurses
11 Nov. 1959
Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge
Just off the coast of Chatham, Massachusetts lies a large Island. This is the Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge - or as the locals call it Monomoy Island. This is a safe ground for New England wildlife.
This is federally protected land. (This post is general information about the island. Detail breaks information will be done in another post this summer.)
Six Fun Facts About Monomoy Island
The Wildlife Refuge was established in 1944 and became a federal Wildlife Refuge in 1970.
This is a 7,600-acre (8-mile long) refuge which provides a resting, nesting, and feed grounds for migratory sea birds.
The beaches along the Chatham shore has the highest concentration of nesting piping plover in New England.
There are five species are protected under the Endangered Species Act (ESA): the piping plover, roseate tern, red knot, northeastern beach tiger beetle, and seabeach amaranth.
The island used to have lots of dune shacks. When the government took over the island in 1944, the US Department of Interior's Fish and Wildlife took over all the land by eminent domain. However, they let the current landowners keep their land as long as the original owner lived and the structure was held up against the tides and storms. The last living person to legally own space died in September 2000. When the structure was taken down it marked the first time in 300 years that the island was free of human building.
The only remaining structure is the Monomoy Point Light which is located on the further point south on the island. It is on the National Historic Register. In 2016 it went under major repair to restore the lighthouse. Chatham Coast Guard helicopters were used to bring in lumber and supplies to help restore the lighthouse.
Visiting the Island?
The Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge has a printable map of all the public accessable trials on Monomy Island.
There's also a handy bird guide to find out when your favorite feather friend visits the island.
Boats to Monomoy
The only way to get on the island is by boat. You can take the Monomy Island Excursion to tour the island and see the seals - you don't get off to explore the island. The boats leave from Harwich.
The Monomoy Island Ferry is one of the oldest tour boats of Monomoy. You can get pretty close to seals and perhaps some whales. They do offer private charter tours of Monomoy where you can walk part of the island. The boat departs from Sage Harbor in Chatham - right next to Monomoy.
Go this Summer
Visiting Monomoy Island is a unique way to see Cape Cod and it worth the visit to get close to nature and enjoy some fresh salt air.
In Lean Methodology, the key point is the Plan, Do, Check, Act - or PDCA Chart. The methodology can be used continually to improve processes.
This will probably be the model that Governments will be using to decide on how to "open up the economy" in the CoronaVirus
What this all means
Figure out the objectives and steps to deliver the best results. Try to recognize an opportunity and plan a change to produce a positive result.
Not only should you take action on the plan, but test a part of the change. Take small steps and add some tracking so the changes can be measured. You want to make sure that the change has a positive effect.
Gather the data from the "Do" stage and evaluate the results. Check to see if it producing the expected results and by all means identify what you have learned.
Take additional action based on what you lean in the Check stage. If necessary, make changes to the action to improve to make to match the desired results.
Kanban Board for QA
This is a sample of a QA Kanban Board that was done a few years ago. Some of the project names were changed to keep it simple.
This team uses Kanban for project management because its easier to focus on tasks rather than the deadline.
It's good idea to use this type of tracking so that people will know what needs to be done and if things are are being worked on.
In this project example, there was a single dedicated QA resource for automation. His job was to make sure that Automation was always up and running. In other teams I have worked on, they would have a separate Kanban board for automation tasks. Usually the availability of time for enhancements is scarce.
Documentation is important - This is something that QA should be doing all the time. QA should always be on the front line of creating and updating the documents. This makes it easy for team members to take over projects when QA resources are on vacation or furlough.
A-Z Challenge - 2020
It's been a crazy few weeks in the United States, and I completely forgot about the April A-Z Blogging Challenge. That event didn't get canceled.
Yes, the A-Z Challenge is on! Well as much as I can do. I started late, and I didn't plan as well as I have done in the past. In addition, I didn't sign up for the challenge in the Official Master List. So technically I am not in the challenge.
However, I am still game as I have been for the last four years: Check out the previous A-Z Challenge Posts.
A-Z Challenge Goals
Here are my top 4 goals for the April A-Z Challenge:
- Focus on more challenging topics. Come up with interesting things that would be fun to find out that I wouldn't have normally researched.
- Be creative with the Blog Post graphics. Come up with good graphics other people might want to use.
- Stay focus on the goal even though no one else knows about them. I'll be sure to let the folks at A-Z Challenge know early next year about being part of the challenge.
- Stick with it, even though I started late, keep the momentum going.
Even though I had a late start, I notice that many people that signed up have completely bailed out on the challenges. I looked through several sights listed on the Official Master List and notice that many have given up only after a couple of days in.
I am confident that I'll finish the challenge strong.