SWEDEN _ House of Test


That time my great grandfather didn't die - Putting the engineering in computer engineering

Session type: 45 min talk

Session level: Intermediate

All layers in the organization knows what best practice is, yet it’s hard to enforce it. Why do we act against our own wish and will?

I will start this talk in a 100 year old accident with personal implications for me personally. A sinking boat, two drowning artists, and my great grandfather being the sole survivor.

The accident was caused by well-known handling errors, enforced by the whole organization from top to bottom. Economic considerations as well as tedious, repetitive manual labor caused a well-built boat to sink.

I see strong parallels between this accident and my work as an agile tester.

Key take-aways:

Emma will argue that the IT business is about as mature as the physical engineering branches were a 100 years ago, and a combination of the GDPR and agile methods is our best hope of changing from a Wild West business to something more modern. Computer engineering differs from any other kind of engineering because of its lack of enforcement of standardized frameworks, checklists and due diligence.


Emma Lilliestam is a security researcher and agile tester working at House of Test in Sweden. She is a chip implanted cyborg and has spoken at various conferences, including being the keynote of Passwordcon 2016. She is also a co-founder of ada_conf, a tech conference for women and trans people. When there is some time to spare, she blogs about processes, user security, GDPR or other super exciting topics.