Where are the German testers?

On the bottom of James Bach’s recommendations of people there is a small paragraph:

That One German Guy

Germany has no excuse. There are TONS of smart people there. How is it only one intellectual software tester has emerged from the ISTQB-addled masses to demand my respect with his work? My theory is that Germany has a more command-and-control culture, which perhaps disparages independent thought of the kind required to achieve excellence in testing. This pains me, because I am descended from Germans and I would love to visit and teach there.

Anyway, the one German guy who shines in my community is Markus Gaertner. I’ll do a write-up on him, shortly.

Yeah, it’s about me. From time to time I am asked by James and other people in our community where the German testers actually are. Here are some folks I am in touch with, that have raised my attention, and I think will need some attention from the wider community. There is not only one guy testing in Germany, seriously.

Meike Mertsch

Meike Mertsch is not only my colleague, but upon joining James’ tutorial at the Swiss Testing Day last year, James got in contact with me over skype along with these lines:

I have met Meike. Now I know two testers in Germany.

Meike is more a developer-tester, but I think she has some potential. I work with her partially as a colleague, partially as a mentor.

Alexander Simic

For quite some time I have been in touch with Alexander. He is working with James as a testing coach, and besides Meike and myself was the third participants at last year’s GATE peer workshop. Alexander is working in Freiburg, eager to meet other like-minded folks.

Maik Nogens

Maik and I started this thing called GATE a while ago. Last year, he couldn’t make the date, though. That does not mean that we are not in touch with each other. In fact, he’s right now co-organizing the Software Testing user group in Hamburg.

Tobias Geyer

Oh, yeah, Tobias is the guy that made me aware of the Software Testing user group in Hamburg at the Agile Testing Days 2010. Since then some things have changed, but I think highly about Tobias, and I think he started a great community in Hamburg there. It’s a bit of a pity that Hamburg seems to be the only user community in Germany I am aware of.

Ursula Beiersdorf

Ursula Beiersdorf right now co-organizes local testing events in Hamburg, Germany together with Maik. I think she is doing a great job in networking and getting testers together.

Stephan Kämper

In 2009 I sat in the same tutorial at a conference as Stephan Kämper. Over the years, I came to value our exchanges on testing, and the greater community.

Andreas Simon

Andreas Simon is the guy that went to the very first Belgium Testing Days on his own budget to attend the Testing Dojos that I facilitated there. We had quite some fun together. Over the past two years, we came to co-organize the local Software Craftsmanship user group in Münster-Osnabrück-Bielefeld, he also organizes Coding Dojos and Code’n’Cake meet-ups in Münster as well.

More

I think there are more. For example there was this guy, Ender Ekinci, who dived deeply into the problems with Parkcalc, and found a way to produce even higher parking costs.

There also is Moritz Schoenberg who I don’t know in person (yet). I became aware of him since he won the uTest award for the tester of the year in a row. I hope to get in touch with him at the next official GATE workshop.

Oh, and of course there is Christian Baumann who attended the first GATE workshop in Hamburg in 2011. He’s been on my radar before that. That usually means I had the impression he is worthwhile to follow.

A final disclaimer: I think I might have forgotten some more people I work with in user groups, and other communities. If you miss your name on this list, drop me a line, and I will check whether to do a follow-up with your name included as well.

Last, but not least, this should be a starting point for you, German testers, to get in touch with us. I think we can excel beyond the state of our craft that we are currently working in. But we need to network better for this to happen.

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13 thoughts on “Where are the German testers?”

  1. First of all, congratulations Markus. I think being recognized on that level really is an achievement and I bet you worked very hard to get where you are.

    The more I read and learn about testing, the more I believe it might suit my personality (My MBTI is ENTP) much more than development. But how do you “get into” testing, especially when you need that dreaded normal job you have to get the food on the table. I didn’t get a chance to try yet, never worked in an organization that considered testing beyond verification a serious endeavor.

    1. Hi Dennis,

      I think the latter point is something we need to change. I don’t see how I can do this all alone. That’s why it’s so important to network. There are a lot of people doing good stuff out there. Let’s collaborate! :)

      Oh, and testing really does not have much to do with MBTI. :)

      1. The MBTI might not necessarily have much to do with testing, but having a certain typ can be a real PITA when it comes to software development. Believe me, I’ve been there! :)

  2. Hey Markus,

    thanks a lot for mentioning my name and the kind words!
    There is one other user group in Germany that I’m aware of: Software Test User Group Rhein Main – see http://dnlkntt.wordpress.com/2013/04/27/news-founded-the-software-test-user-group-rhein-main/
    The user group has just been founded by Daniel Knott. I think very highly of him, not only because of the user group but also because of his work in the area of mobile testing and mobile test automation.

    Greets
    Tobias

  3. Hi Markus,

    Some Germans immigrate to NZ to practice better testing without going up against the Made-in-Germany-Engineering-Leviathan. So far I can vouch for the experiment. We have a small but vibrant community here and we invite all German CDT testers to come and join us (and I don’t just mean for a holiday)! There’s space enough!

    ;-)

    Cheers Oliver

  4. I am a German tester myself in the UK and am glad you made this list!! Lots more inspiring people to follow up on and maybe discuss issues with in future meetings.

  5. Hi Markus,

    thanks for this post since I’m also looking for the people to cooperate in creating a community in Bavaria region (remember my questions regarding this topic on ATD’12 in Potsdam?).

    Let’s see whether I can help community with anything.

    1. Hi Victor,

      I remember our chat in Potsdam. I think you should get in touch with Alexander Simic, as he works near to Freiburg. If I can help you out with something, drop me a line as well.

      Best
      Markus

  6. Hi Markus and congratulations for getting the vote of most influental agile tester.

    You may remember me from weekend testing times, even though that is no longer active.

    Most people you mention are coaches and consultants and naturally stand in the spotlight. Most testers though will be permanently employed at a given company so stepping out of that and getting more visible in the testing arena takes more of an effort – at least that’s my excuse.
    Due to moving countries again, Scotland, then Gibraltar and now Germany again and changing jobs I didn’t write anything, didn’t meet with other testers, etc but want to remedy that in the near future.
    So yes, there are more people in Germany interested in advancing the testing craft.

    Cheers,

    Thomas

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