Artificial intelligence is a computer science discipline that simulates intelligence in machines, by making them think, act and mimic human actions. There has been a significant development in the artificial intelligence industries, machines are automated to take rational actions and exhibit traits that are associated with humans. As days go by more and more algorithms are being created to mimic human intelligence and are embedded into machines. Software testing and development is a very important aspect where artificial intelligence is applied. With Digitalization improving human efficiency, so has improvements in AI shaped the way software is being tested.
2016-2017 Quality assurance report suggests that AI will help shape software testing by assisting humans in eliminating problems associated with QA and software testing challenges. However, if these needs are met in the software industries there is a possibility that human testers will become extinct.
This calls for the question “Can Artificial intelligence replace humans in software testing?” Many software experts believe that artificial intelligence can only assist in software testing and cannot replace humans, because humans are still needed to think outside the box and explore inherent vulnerabilities in the software. Contrary to this, others think otherwise. But after critical thought and weighing both views, it appears that the former obviously holds more tangible points than the latter.
The Evolution in Software testing is continuous with the adoption of Agile and DevOps methodologies. And software development will also continue to evolve in the era of AI. Artificial intelligence is charged with creating software to understand input data versus output data. This is similar to software tests carried out by human software testers, where the tester types in an input and looks for an expected output.
Today, testing tools have evolved. Automation tools can be used to create, organize and prioritize test cases. Efficiently managing tests and their outcomes remain essential to giving the developers the feedback they need.
Shortcomings of Humans in Software testing that can be positively transformed by Artificial intelligence
Although humans are considered a reliable source for software testing, humans still have its own shortcomings. This is a disadvantage to human software testers which reduces their efficiency and performance in software testing. These shortcomings are stated as follows:
- Time-consuming: The primary disadvantage of performing software testing by humans is that it is time-consuming. Validation of the functionalities of a software might take days and weeks, and with the assistance of Artificial intelligence time wastage is reduced to minimal.
- Limited possibilities of testing for manual scenarios: Artificial intelligence creates a broad scope for testing contrary to the limited scope available to the human testing scenarios.
- Lack of automation: Manual testing requires the presence of the software tester, but testing using artificial intelligence can be done steadily without much human intervention.
- In a large organization without the help of Artificial intelligence automated tools in software testing, there will be low productivity.
- Manual testing is not always 100% accurate as it can be exposed to certain errors which may elude the software tester. Some glitches in the software are usually not recognized by the software tester, validation only occurs in certain areas and others are ignored. With AI coverage as well as accuracy can be improved.
- Scalability issues: manual testing is a linear process and happens sequential manner. this means that only one test can be created and done at the same time, trying to create more test from other functionalities simultaneously can increase complexity.
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of Artificial intelligence testing tools in software testing?
Artificial intelligence testing tools can work side by side with the software testers in order to achieve improved quality in software testing. Modern Applications interacts with each other through a myriad of APIs which constantly grows in complexity exponentially as technology evolve. Software development life cycle is becoming more complicated by day and thus, management of delivery time is still significant. Therefore, software testers need to work smarter and not harder in this new age of software development.
Artificial intelligence testing tools have helped to make software releases and updates that happens once a month to occur on weekly or daily basis. An artificial intelligence testing platform can perform tests more efficiently than human beings, and with constant updates to its algorithm, even the slightest change can be observed in the software. But as much as artificial intelligence has positive achievements in software testing industries, it still has its corresponding disadvantages. Some of these disadvantages are reasons why human contributions cannot be neglected.
- Improved accuracy and efficiency: Even the most experienced software testers are bound to make mistakes. Due to how monotonous software testing is, errors are inevitable. This is where artificial intelligence tools help by performing the same test steps accurately each time they are executed and at the same time provides detailed results and feedbacks. Testers are freed from monotonous manual tests giving them more time to explore the application & able to give input for improvements or usability areas.
- Increases the Overall test coverage: Artificial intelligence testing tools can help increase the scope of tests, this results in overall improvement of software quality. AI testing tools canscan through the memory, file contents, and data tables in order to determine if the software is behaving as it is expected to and at the same time can provide more triage information or even a root cause..
- Saved time + Money = Faster delivery to Market: Due to repetitions that exist in software testing every time a new product is created or modified, a human tester is needed to solve the problem associated with each test case by creating and automating tests. This helps to solve the problem of repetition, thereby saving time and money and help achieve faster delivery. By integrating AI software testing, the overall timespan can be reduced which translates directly into cost savings.
- Going beyond the limitations of manual testing: AI testing tools or bots can automatically create tens, hundreds or thousands of virtual set of users that can interact with a network, software or web-based application. This helps software testers to execute a controlled web testing with hundreds of users thereby breaking the limitation of manual testing.
- Helps both developers and testers
- Artificial intelligence software testers use the concept of GIGO (Garbage in Garbage Out): Most people are looking at artificial intelligent to fix all their testing ills. They hope Artificial intelligence will solve all the problems that manual testing has not been able to address. The simple fact is that a problem that cannot be solved manually cannot be solved by an AI tool as well. AI tools can only solve problems that have been solved manually and has been directed for them to solve digitally. Therefore, an Artificial intelligence tool can only do what it is told to do and cannot go beyond that.
- High costs: the high cost associated with acquiring AI tools coupled with cost needed to get it updated with time to meet the latest requirements, can make it inaccessible to individual testers or smaller organizations.
- Can’t think outside the box: Automated software testers can only do what they are programmed to do. Their capability is limited and cannot go beyond whatever algorithm or programming is stored in their internal circuit.
- Unemployment: Much human software testers won’t be needed to perform software testing Jobs because most of the positions have been occupied by automation tools. Thus, limited positions will now be available for human testers to occupy.Read for more About : Artificial intelligence and software testing