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Month in Review: August 2021



Zoopla Work

This month, there was a lot of work around visual testing, performance testing and contract testing. I helped our team integrate Percy to our pipelines so on every merge request, we also validate the pages visually to help reduce the risk of deploying visual bugs to production. This was a collaboration with the QE team and we all learned more about Gitlab tokens, Gitlab pipelines, AWS Secret Manager and Percy in general.


I also helped my product team with introducing k6 as part of our load testing strategy. I've previously blogged about how to use k6 which you can read here - Shifting Performance Testing to the Left with k6. It's align with our technology stack and other teams at Zoopla are also already using k6 so it made sense to choose this tooling. We've identified that we want to do load, stress and soak testing to make sure that our new API can handle anticipated traffic from consumers. Using customer data that I got from ContentSquare, I helped the team defined what our metrics should be such as how many concurrent virtual users, the duration of the tests and our ramp up time. Our engineers created the k6 script and helped me run the tests on a docker container so we can easily integrate it into our Gitlab pipeline.


There's also continuous work around contract testing to integrate it to other data providers and improve the pipeline a bit more by using Pact's Can I Deploy command to verify that we are safe to deploy our changes to an environment.


I've also been taking part a bit more on doing technical interviews. There's still a lot of open positions here at Zoopla so if you're on the look out for a new role, have a look at our current vacancies.


Community Work

This month brings another month of advocating for more accessibility work. I spoke at Bartosz Ciach's (fellow Cypress ambassador) Cypress workshop and gave a talk on why accessibility is important and what we can do to bring it much earlier in the development life cycle. On a similar note, he is hosting in-person workshops now in Poland so if you are interested to learn about Cypress, get in touch with him.


I also wrote a blog post for Applitools around accessibility as well which you can find here - Shifting Accessibility Testing to the Left.


Nicola Lindgren also got in touch if she can interview me for her blog post which was amazing! You can find the blog post here - Interview with Marie Drake. I talked about some of the common mistakes people make when it comes to test automation, an insight into the women who I look up to in my career, how I became a Cypress ambassador and an accessibility advocate.


And lastly, I also got featured in Test Sigma and shared my thoughts on why I love Software Testing, together with other testers, which you can find here - Why I Love Testing.


Personal Development

πŸ“šThis month, I read The Dictionary of Body Language by Joe Navarro which was quite insightful because now I have more understanding of body languages! I didn't read the full book to be honest but I skimmed into the parts that I would like to know. I also read The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy and this book is so useful and inspirational! Darren talks about the importance of how small consistent habits can lead to long term rewards and how being consistent pays off. I will be reading this book again in the future!


🎧 Still consistently listening to podcast episodes almost every day. For this month though, I have listened to more inspirational podcasts such as Darren Daily on demand and On Purpose by Jay Shetty.


πŸ’ͺ🏼 Apart from my normal workouts, I completed 30 days of push ups and have been walking a lot more than previous months. However, I've been eating a lot of unhealthy foods again πŸ˜…


✍🏼 This month also marks a year of bullet journalling! For the past year, I used my bullet journal to track my events, things I need to do and prioritise, track my habits, write down what I'm grateful for and personal check-ins. It's been really helpful in managing what I need to work on.


Two bullet journals and calendar stickers for the journal.
One year of bullet journal!

August Favourites

  • We celebrated my Dad's birthday and went to a restaurant in Soho that serves deep dish pizzas. Their carbonara pizza was so good!

  • Rafaela and I took Gabby to Woburn Safari Park. It was an awesome day except Gabby was disappointed she didn't see any gorillas πŸ˜…

  • Went to Massaoke with friends and sang and danced all night.

  • Ate and cooked lots of Filipino food.

  • Took Gabby to her first mini golf experience.

  • Spontaneous trip to Newquay, Cornwall!




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