By Conor O'Neill | January 7, 2007
The past week has been very educational with the bugs and issues being reported by the Beta Testers. We actually went with Friends and Family, many of whom are non-technical to do the first round of testing. I really wanted to see how they interacted with the site. Whilst we gave instructions on use, they were not overly detailed on purpose. In any case most testers didn’t read them 😉
We were aware of many of the bugs but a few really caught us by surprise and all of them will need to be fixed for Beta2. Some issues we considered low priority to fix turned out to be the opposite for all the users and we need to sort them out asap as it will also reduce the maintenance load on us.
The response has been very positive to the overall feature set but with one area requiring a new UI as expected since no-one understands what the functionality is for!
We’ve also had a major change of heart on the sorting of search results. It was only when one of the testers pointed out that they actively hated the basis for our current sorting that I realised we had a problem. From a development perspective it is not a big deal really but conceptually it is. This highlights that beta testing is about far more than bug finding – here we have a tester whose feedback has changed a fundamental feature that has been there since day 1 of the spec.
We’ll send out some more invites in the coming week to get a broader view and build up more content.