Product Testers

Here are some of the people that help evaluate software at this site. Although they sometimes present their biases below in folksy talk, they all follow similar formal testing guidelines when wringing out products.

Rosalyn:  I love being jolted by products. Innovation is the drug that gives me the thrills. It has to hit immediately leaving me smiling and bewildered ... I live for that something brilliant to come past my desk ...but alas, I must be getting pretty jaded because jolts are pretty sparse these day. But I'm always willing to look at new products and see if they can give me that smile.

Steve:   I am a professor in the Graduate Computer Science/Software Engineering Department at a Washington University, seminar leader and mentor. Probably that makes me dangerous. It certainly makes me lament the inconsistencies of the software produced in my home state and really depressed that things haven't improved much since my first 1 MHz 8080 back before the Civil War. Hope your product will lift my spirits.

Dawn: I can be extremely tough to please. I count as the voice of a large portion of impatient Internet users out there. I rarely spend over 4 minutes at a site. I am not very tolerant of ponderous, bloated programs which take a long time to load. Same with long-winded manuals. Difficult to locate options or hidden settings get the best my rancor has to offer. Get by me and everything else will seem smooth to you. Proof of my priorities: I have a smoldering pile of trashed consumer software on the ground below my office window. A sign near it reads "hard hat area - falling software zone."

Bob: I run several businesses. I am founder of an Internet games company and perform contract work as a mercenary-for-hire in the web-slinger business. I've written too much software to be tolerant of sloppy work and design decisions that make the programmer's life easier rather than the user's.
Gordon: I'm a Brit and throw a mean accent at voice interface products. I'm also new enough at computers that I really don't understand phrases like "minimize a window" and "changing mouse focus." And I'm not convinced I should understand. So a program's instructions had better be easy. I take my laptop into the offices of CEO's, so your product should perform flawlessly under that kind of stress or the Queen will hear about it...
Mike: I sell software and hardware, so you can't fool me. It's either good or it's crapola. I won't sell software that has poor tutorials, on-line help or vendor support. The first crash or stall and you're out the door...forever.
Millie: I'm a senior citizen, at least that's what my younger 75 year old friends tell me. I can send e-mails with the best of them, though. Can't stand voice interface products that are hard to correct and don't work well with the other software I like. And about software which Marketing groups force release before it's ready: at my age I don't have the time anymore to wait for green bananas to get ripe.
Tricia: I'm a professor of speech pathology at a state university. I love working with people and and have a sharp eye for software that gets in the way of that. I know what makes it easy and what makes it hard for people to use speech interfaces productively. Because I don't know how hard it is to write great software, I'm pretty intolerant of software that isn't great.




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Page Last Updated: 05/24/99