Testing is the opposite of something. But what?

Have you ever thought what would be the opposite of belief? It’s not disbelief even though it might be the first impulse to say so.

To believe is to place our trust in something that we are not sure of. It is a decicion to do so. And for some of us the belief might even be a decicion about the ultimate anatomy of the universe.

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On the other hand. If there was something that we were absolutely sure about, then there would be nothing to believe in. There would only be the opposite, which I like to call certainty.

Certainty is the opposite of belief.

This is the truth. I give you my assurance.

Doesn’t it feel off somehow? For me to assure you that this is the truth? Would you not like to question my logic there? Would you not challenge it if you were given a chance?

Most of us seem to be in love with a notion of quality assurance. Even though discussion about assurance points towards a feeling of unease, towards a need to question it further, towards testing.

Assurance aims at building the sense of certainty. And at the same time it succeeds at building beliefs that support our assumptions. I don’t need that to succeed in my software projects.

I need observations that show me the truth instead. That is why I really need testing instead of assurance.

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