Good Programming Techniques. III. Non—Computer Based Testing

  • John B. Slater


In the early days of computing the programmer designer, numerical expert, etc spent a good deal of time checking through every single facet of a program before it was let near the computer. Computer time was so precious that any amount of human effort was considered to be worthwhile to avoid a wasted run on the machine. Dry running or desk checking — the technique of “playing computer” to real data — was an expected weapon in the armoury of all programmers, not merely as a means of avoiding bugs, but as the main means of finding them after an unsuccessful run. This phenomenon can be reproduced if you look at current GCSE syllabi, especially as taught at those few schools still relying on batch services for their computing.


Integer Variable Unit System Boolean Operator Check List Reference Variable 
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  1. G M Weinberg, ‘The Psychology of Computer Programming’, (van Nostrand).Google Scholar
  2. G J Myers, ‘The Art of Software Testing’, (Wiley).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • John B. Slater
    • 1
  1. 1.Bath University Computing ServiceUniversity of BathClaverton Down, Bath, AvonUK

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