Today, BPA is a normal part of the toolkit for process excellence and continuous improvement, with components like systems integration, enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, and workflow tools. With the Internet of Things (IoT) connecting objects to the digital world, BPA enables the transfer of data over a network without any human interaction. Advances in mobile technology have enabled a remote workforce, which can dramatically decrease company expenses.


The method or process being used to implement automation is called a test automation framework. Several frameworks have been implemented over the years by commercial vendors and testing organizations. Automating tests with commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) or open source software can be complicated, however, because they almost always require customization. In many organizations, automation is only implemented when it has been determined that the manual testing program is not meeting expectations and it is not possible to bring in more human testers.
The UTF's supplies a toolbox of testing tools to ease creation and maintenance of test programs and provide a uniform error reporting mechanism. The toolbox supplied in most part in a form of macro and function declarations. While the functions can be called directly, the usual way to use testing tools is via convenience macros. All macros arguments are calculated once, so it's safe to pass complex expressions in their place. All tools automatically supply an error location: a file name and a line number. The testing tools are intended for unit test code rather than library or production code, where throwing exceptions, using assert(), boost::concept_check or BOOST_STATIC_ASSERT() may be more suitable ways to detect and report errors. For list of all supplied testing tools and usage examples see the reference.
Kim Kadiyala, Marketing Specialist at Zapier, says: “We're in an exciting time where business process automation is accessible to everyone — even if you're not technically savvy or a programmer. Tools that connect your apps put the power of automation into the hands of marketers, founders, real estate agents, and lawyers. Anyone who is moving bits of information from one place to another can set up an automation and start saving some time. I like to say that there are some tasks that are better suited for computers and some tasks best done by humans. Automating the tedious parts of your work frees you up to spend more time on the more creative aspects of your job, like big-picture thinking and strategic problem solving.
The Echo is a Bluetooth speaker powered by Alexa, Amazon's handy voice assistant. Alexa works with a number of smart home devices directly, as well as with If This Then That (IFTTT) to control plenty of others via "recipes" you can create yourself. It'll take some work, but you can use Alexa to control most of the gadgets in your house by the sound of your voice. If you already have a favorite speaker, the inexpensive Echo Dot can connect to it and add Alexa functionality. And if you want a touch screen to see search results and make video calls, check out the Echo Show or Echo Spot.
TL;DR: Testing is a sophisticated task that requires a broad set of skills and with the means currently available cannot be automated. What can (and should) be automated is regression testing. This is what we usually refer to when we say test automation. Regression testing is not testing, but merely rechecking existing functionality. So regression testing is more like version control of the dynamic properties of the software.
Last October, Uber had one of its self-­driving trucks make a beer run, traveling 200 kilometers down the interstate to deliver a cargo of Budweiser from Fort Collins to Colorado Springs. A person rode in the truck but spent most of the trip in the sleeper berth, monitoring the automated system. (The test came just a few weeks after Uber had announced its driverless car service in Pittsburgh.) The self-driving truck developed by Uber’s recently acquired Otto unit reflects remarkable technological achievements. It also provides yet another indicator of a looming shift in the economy that could have deep political consequences.
When we first tested robotic pool cleaners, the Polaris 9550 Sport took top honors thanks to its superb cleaning performance, easy-to-clean debris canister, and multiple programming options. The new Polaris 9650iQ Sport brings more of the same, only this time it offers Wi-Fi connectivity and a useful mobile app that lets you control the cleaner from your smartphone. It's expensive at $1,499, but if you'd rather spend more time swimming in your pool than you do cleaning it, it's worth every penny.
Kim Kadiyala, Marketing Specialist at Zapier, says: “We're in an exciting time where business process automation is accessible to everyone — even if you're not technically savvy or a programmer. Tools that connect your apps put the power of automation into the hands of marketers, founders, real estate agents, and lawyers. Anyone who is moving bits of information from one place to another can set up an automation and start saving some time. I like to say that there are some tasks that are better suited for computers and some tasks best done by humans. Automating the tedious parts of your work frees you up to spend more time on the more creative aspects of your job, like big-picture thinking and strategic problem solving.
Robotic process automation (RPA)—typically used to automate structured, back office digital process tasks—turns out to be the opening gambit in many organizations’ digital transformation strategies. It also appears to be a precursor to artificial intelligence (AI).  In a recent research project on priorities in process and performance management,  APQC, a business research institute, found that RPA was a nucleus of 69 percent of digital strategies. In another survey on investments in process automation, anticipated RPA projects were right behind analytics and data management, and almost twice as likely as near-term investments in AI or intelligent automation.  (See Figure 1) Only 12 percent of those APQC surveyed had no plans to invest in any of these technologies in 2018.

Robot Framework is an open-source automation framework that implements the keyword-driven approach for acceptance testing and acceptance test-driven development (ATDD). Robot Framework provides frameworks for different test automation needs. But its test capability can be further extended by implementing additional test libraries using Python and Java. Selenium WebDriver is a popular external library used in Robot Framework.


Trump thinks about citizenship—and about taking it away—a lot. His entry into Republican politics was an attack on President Barack Obama’s status as a “natural-born citizen.” He is also no fan of the citizenship clause of the Fourteenth Amendment: “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside.”

Test automation is a fundamental part of Agile. Various core practices of Agile, such as Continuous Integration (CI), Continuous Delivery, Test-Driven Development (TDD), and Behavior-Driven Development (BDD) rely on the efficiency and reliability of test automation. For teams using Agile methods, test automation impacts more than just the software being developed: successful test automation practices also highlight the culture change and importance of teamwork associated with Agile.
The 2018 Process Control & Safety Symposium and Exhibition (PCS) returns to Houston, TX. Sponsored by the Process Measurement and Control, Safety and Security, Chemical and Petroleum, Communications, Education, Pulp and Paper, and Management Divisions of ISA and the ISA Houston Section who are teaming up to bring another world-class program, exhibit, and networking event this November.
Automation tools perform a series of preplanned scenarios with expected results, and either check exact screen regions -- in record/playback -- or only what they are told to specifically check for -- in keyword-driven. A computer will never say "that looks odd," never explore or get inspired by one test to have a new idea. Nor will a computer note that a "failure" is actually a change in the requirements. Instead, the test automation will log a failure and a human will have to look at the false failure, analyze it, recognize that it is not a bug and "fix" the test. This creates a maintenance burden. Automated testing tools automate only the test execution and evaluation.

Home automation (also called domotics) designates an emerging practice of increased automation of household appliances and features in residential dwellings, particularly through electronic means that allow for things impracticable, overly expensive or simply not possible in recent past decades. The rise in the usage of home automation solutions has taken a turn reflecting the increased dependency of people on such automation solutions. However, the increased comfort that gets added through these automation solutions is remarkable.[77]
Perhaps you saw a 2014 story in the New York Times about a man who had just changed jobs and applied to refinance his mortgage. Even though he’d had a steady government job for eight years and a steady teaching job for more than 20 years before that, he was turned down for the loan. The automated system that evaluated his application recognized that the projected payments were well within his income level, but it was smart enough to seize on a risk marker: His new career would involve a great deal more variation and uncertainty in earnings.
Engineers can now have numerical control over automated devices. The result has been a rapidly expanding range of applications and human activities. Computer-aided technologies (or CAx) now serve as the basis for mathematical and organizational tools used to create complex systems. Notable examples of CAx include Computer-aided design (CAD software) and Computer-aided manufacturing (CAM software). The improved design, analysis, and manufacture of products enabled by CAx has been beneficial for industry.[55]
If stepping up is your chosen approach, you will probably need a long education. A master’s degree or a doctorate will serve you well as a job applicant. Once inside an organization, your objective must be to stay broadly informed and creative enough to be part of its ongoing innovation and strategy efforts. Ideally you’ll aspire to a senior management role and thus seize the opportunities you identify. Listen to Barney Harford, the CEO of Orbitz—a business that has done more than most to eliminate knowledge worker jobs. To hire for the tasks he still requires people to do, Harford looks for “T-shaped” individuals. Orbitz needs “people who can go really deep in their particular area of expertise,” he says, “and also go really broad and have that kind of curiosity about the overall organization and how their particular piece of the pie fits into it.” That’s good guidance for any knowledge worker who wants to step up: Start thinking more synthetically—in the old sense of that term. Find ways to rely on machines to do your intellectual spadework, without losing knowledge of how they do it. Harford has done that by applying “machine learning” to the generation of algorithms that match customers with the travel experiences they desire.
Automated software testing has long been considered critical for big software development organizations but is often thought to be too expensive or difficult for smaller companies to implement. SmartBear’s Tools are affordable enough for single developer shops and yet powerful enough that our customer list includes some of the largest and most respected companies in the world.
The Nest Learning Thermostat has built-in Wi-Fi so you can remotely control the temperature from phone, tablet, or PC. This latest generation also has a larger display and a few more sensors than its predecessors, in addition to geofencing support and a furnace monitor. If you find it a bit too pricey, Nest also offers the Thermostat E, which has most of the same smart features for $80 less.
Many people have tried to make this point in different ways (e.g. this is also the quintessence of the discussion about testing vs. checking, started by James Bach and Michael Bolton). But the emotionally loaded discussions (because it is about peoples self-image and their jobs) often split discussants into two broad camps: those that think test automation is “snake oil” and should be used sparsely and with caution, and those that think it is a silver bullet and the solution to all of our quality problems. Test automation is an indispensable tool of today’s quality assurance but as every tool it can also be misused.
Automation is not100% – Automation testing cannot be 100% and don’t think of that. Surely you have areas like performance testing, regression testing, and load/stress testing where you can have scope of reaching near to 100% automation. Areas like User interface, documentation, installation, compatibility and recovery where testing must be done manually.
While automated testing has been considered essential for organizations, both large and small, to implement in order to deliver outstanding software and stay competitive in the industry, it can be tough to get started. Outlining an effective roadmap, building robust frameworks, choosing the right tools, and measuring the potential monetary impact that automation could have on your delivery lifecycle are all critical components of any successful automated testing strategy, but each step presents its own challenges and costs.
Summary: Provides visibility into the testing process with capabilities to manage, organize and report on tests. SmartBear QAComplete offers out-of-the-box templates or custom workflow options, defect logging, the ability to trace tests to user stories and reusability across the testing cycle. It also integrates with tools like Jira, Selenium and SoapUI.

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In most fields, workers rarely have any formal input into whether their job is automated, or how and when automation could be implemented. Self-automators offer a glimpse of what it looks like when automation is orchestrated not by top-down corporate fiat, but by the same workers who stand to reap its benefits. Some embrace the extra leisure time, while others use the spare hours to learn new skills and tackle new programmatic challenges.


“Another common mistake is trying to get testers to do both jobs, so when management gives the go ahead for automation testing, any QA related job these days requires some level of automation and testers might get excited about the potential for test automation. But these are both full-time jobs, so often times [these] teams struggle with deciding what to spend limited time on.”
The legendary thoroughbred trainer D. Wayne Lukas can’t articulate exactly how he manages to see the potential in a yearling. He just does. Apple’s revered designer Jonathan Ive can’t download his taste to a computer. Ricky Gervais makes people laugh at material a machine would never dream up. Do they all use computers in their daily work lives? Unquestionably. But their genius has been to discover the ineffable strengths they possess and to spend as much time as possible putting them to work. Machines can perform numerous ancillary tasks that would otherwise encroach on the ability of these professionals to do what they do best.
But many economists argue that automation bears much more blame than globalization for the decline of jobs in the region’s manufacturing sector and the gutting of its middle class. Indeed, in his farewell speech to thousands in a packed convention hall in Chicago, President Obama warned: “The next wave of economic dislocations won’t come from overseas. It will come from the relentless pace of automation that makes a lot of good middle-class jobs obsolete.”

Have you ever paid attention to how often the apps on your phone update? Sure some update to eliminate bugs, but some update more and more frequently to introduce new products, new designs, and new innovations that make the app experience better. Why? Because the creatives in that company were able to take time to listen to customer feedback and design new products that solved pain points. With automation taking more of the grunt work, I bet we will see more of this in the future.
API testing is also being widely used by software testers due to the difficulty of creating and maintaining GUI-based automation testing. It involves directly testing APIs as part of integration testing, to determine if they meet expectations for functionality, reliability, performance, and security.[10] Since APIs lack a GUI, API testing is performed at the message layer.[11] API testing is considered critical when an API serves as the primary interface to application logic since GUI tests can be difficult to maintain with the short release cycles and frequent changes commonly used with agile software development and DevOps.[12][13]
Using automation, your team member would select the department and the position they are hiring and download the automated checklist. This checklist would update to reflect the necessary tasks to recruit and onboard this type of employee. Each interviewee gets a fresh checklist, and all the interview and hiring information is automatically stored in a central location. Once the choice is made, the hiring process pushes the information to the onboarding process.

Home automation gives you access to control devices in your home from a mobile device anywhere in the world. The term may be used for isolated programmable devices, like thermostats and sprinkler systems, but home automation more accurately describes homes in which nearly everything — lights, appliances, electrical outlets, heating and cooling systems — are hooked up to a remotely controllable network. From a home security perspective, this also includes your alarm system, and all of the doors, windows, locks, smoke detectors, surveillance cameras and any other sensors that are linked to it.

Customer Support – If you own any kind of website, you probably have some sort of customer support software set up. While the software tends to differ in functionality, most of them allow you to automate responses to customers. For example, if your software has problems with users logging in through LinkedIn, and that’s 90% of customer tickets. You can just create an automatic response to any message that has “LinkedIn” mentioned, saying that it’s a known issue and will soon be solved. This allows your support team to attend to tickets that are less-known.


Carla O’Dell is the chairman of APQC, a non-profit business research institute focused on benchmarking, best practices, process improvement and knowledge management for a global corporations and consulting firms.  She has authored three books, one on competitiveness and two on knowledge management.  She writes and speaks frequently on the impact of AI and cognitive technologies on how we share knowledge and writes an APQC blog and interviews series called  Big Thinkers, Big Ideas.

Self-automators show that coders are in a unique position to negotiate with employers over which automation-derived gains—like shorter workweeks and greater flexibility to pursue work that interests them—should be kept by workers. There’s little evidence of any interest in doing so, but theoretically, self-automators could organize, and distribute automation techniques among middle- and working-class coders, giving rising to an industry that could actually enjoy that 15-hour workweek. It seems a rare opportunity—perhaps, with the advance of AI, one of the last—to try to set the terms for a mode of automation that puts people first.

Another example is automation in human resources (HR). You can automate the recruitment and employee onboarding processes. In many companies, job descriptions and applications are not stored in a central location, while the screening and interviewing process is based on your current employees’ accountability, meaning that the process may be inconsistent and could open up your business to possible hiring bias. Onboarding can also vary among employees.


From its founding in Birmingham, Alabama in 1990, Automation Personnel Services has expanded across the United States with district offices that operate in Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Louisiana, and Texas.  Automation Personnel Services has the resources and expertise to provide cutting-edge, cost-effective workforce solutions to companies and industries of all sizes including, manufacturing, electronics, distribution, engineering, and wholesale sales.
Installing thousands of bots has taken a lot longer and is more complex and costly than most organizations have hoped it would be, Edlich and Sohoni say. The platforms on which bots interact often change, and the necessary flexibility isn’t always configured into the bot. Moreover, a new regulation requiring minor changes to an application form could throw off months of work in the back office on a bot that’s nearing completion.
Summary: Provides test automation for end-to-end scenarios across multiple endpoints with support for REST, web services and over 120 protocols/message types. Parasoft SOAtest creates extensible and reusable tests. In addition to API testing, it also offers SOA testing, web and performance testing, web UI testing, runtime error testing, API security testing, service virtualization, and development testing.
Automation isn’t necessarily meant to replace people. Some of that will happen as a result of removing steps that require human interaction, but the focus and advantages are found in productivity, consistency, and efficiency. This is the paradox of automation—as you become efficient using automation, human involvement becomes both more important and less frequent.
What you really need to know: Amazon released Device Farm as an extension of Amazon Web Services in July 2015. Later in 2015, it release support for an internal scriptless UI automation framework in addition to existing Calabash, Appium and Espresso integrations. This framework is not yet popular, as most users are still using the open source integrations.
Traeger has been manufacturing pellet grills for thirty years, but the Timberline 1300 is its first connected model, and it's a beauty. Designed using input from longtime customers and professional pit bosses, the Timberline 1300 features Wi-Fi, which allows you to control cooking temperatures, set timers, and access a huge database of recipes from anywhere using your mobile device and a thoughtfully designed app. It also uses a patented smoke delivery system to ensure food gets the right amount of smoke and is cooked perfectly every time.

The IT industry depends on similar Agile practices of different names to meet the market’s demand for their products and services. Test automation is vital to Agile and the companies using Continuous Integration and Delivery, TDD, and BDD. For the titans of technology and the IT industry at large to reap the benefits of test automation, they must rely on automation frameworks.
The strategy that will work in the long term, for employers and the employed, is to view smart machines as our partners and collaborators in knowledge work. By emphasizing augmentation, we can remove the threat of automation and turn the race with the machine into a relay rather than a dash. Those who are able to smoothly transfer the baton to and from a computer will be the winners.
You can upgrade to Gold for $5.99 a month (less if you subscribe for six or 12 months), which gives you an ad-free experience, premium content, and even more detail. You also get advanced charts and analyses. One example is the function that shows your nutrient ratios on a scale from green to red, like your omega-3 to omega-6 ratio (here’s why that matters) and your zinc to copper ratio (here’s why that matters). There’s lots of opportunity to geek out on CRON-O-meter Gold.
The second catalyst for rapid adoption of RPA is the success of early pilots and proofs of concept. APQC's latest report, Make Success Automatic: Best Practices in Robotic Process Automation found that over 75% of respondents said their early RPA projects had met or exceeded expectations  (See Figure 2--Note: only 41% of respondents were far enough along to evaluate their satisfaction with RPA projects; Figure 2 includes only their data.)
Nearly a century later, despite formidable advances in technology, repetitive tasks persist. Automation continues apace; millions of jobs once carried out by humans are accomplished by software and mechanized factories, while Americans are working harder and increasingly longer hours. The gains from automation have generally been enjoyed not by those who operate the machines, but by those who own them. According to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, the share of income going to wages in OECD nations has been decreasing since the 1970s, while the share being funneled into capital—into things like cash reserves and machinery—has been increasing. It can seem that some of the only workers who have realized any scrap of that rusty old promise of automation are the ones who’ve carved out the code to claim it for themselves.
Testing at this level gives your testers the option to set up data and go through a series of tests with the inputs and expected outputs you've defined in separate spreadsheets or files. This lets your team create automated tests against boundary conditions, edge cases, or error conditions, without involving the UI. These tests are slower and more complicated than unit tests because they may need to access a database or other components. You should absolutely use them, however, as they're still much faster and more reliable than UI tests.
Automation is essential for many scientific and clinical applications.[78] Therefore, automation has been extensively employed in laboratories. From as early as 1980 fully automated laboratories have already been working.[79] However, automation has not become widespread in laboratories due to its high cost. This may change with the ability of integrating low-cost devices with standard laboratory equipment.[80][81] Autosamplers are common devices used in laboratory automation.
The promise of automation, touted by optimistic economists and sanguine futurists, has been that yielding work to machines would eliminate the drudgery of mindless, repetitive labor, freeing humans to fill our days with leisure, creative pursuits, or more dynamic work. In 1930, John Maynard Keynes famously speculated that “automatic machinery and the methods of mass production” would help deliver a 15-hour workweek—and even those hours would only be necessary to help men feel they had something to do.
“I don’t understand why people would think it’s unethical,” Woodcock says. “You use various tools and forms of automation anyway; anyone who works with a computer is automating work.” He says if any of these coders had sat in front of the computer, manually inputting the data day after day, they’d never be reprimanded. But by demonstrating that they’re capable of higher levels of efficiency, some may, perversely, feel like they’re shirking a duty to the companies that employ them. This is perhaps why automating work can feel like cheating, and be treated as such by corporate policy. On Amazon Mechanical Turk, the tech company’s marketplace for microwork, automation is explicitly against its terms of service—and the gig workers like those on the platform, who labor for cents per task, could stand to benefit from automation most of all.

The introduction of prime movers, or self-driven machines advanced grain mills, furnaces, boilers, and the steam engine created a new requirement for automatic control systems including temperature regulators (invented in 1624 (see Cornelius Drebbel)), pressure regulators (1681), float regulators (1700) and speed control devices. Another control mechanism was used to tent the sails of windmills. It was patented by Edmund Lee in 1745.[16] Also in 1745, Jacques de Vaucanson invented the first automated loom. The design of feedback control systems up through the Industrial Revolution was by trial-and-error, together with a great deal of engineering intuition. Thus, it was more of an art than a science. In the mid-19th century mathematics was first used to analyze the stability of feedback control systems. Since mathematics is the formal language of automatic control theory, we could call the period before this time the prehistory of control theory.
Take the test automation pyramid diagram and put it on your wall. It should serve as a reminder that the majority of automation tests should be at the unit test level, followed by those that can be executed at the API or service level. Finally, with strong test design, you can write a minimum set of automated UI tests to complete your automation test suite. Once you have this solid set of automation tests at your disposal, regression testing will be a breeze.
Support includes the tools that testers use to move faster or extend their reach. Software to generate random names to use for input, or test data in general, falls into this category, as well as software to create screen captures and videos. This type of software exists to record all of the interactions that a tester has had with various fields, simulators for mobile devices, and developer environments that blend into the background and pop-up on command to record notes.
Interview Wardrobe Mistakes That Are Costing You the Job - Job seekers spend so much time crafting the perfect resume they often overlook other elements that are essential to a successful interview – like their wardrobe. While some jobs don’t require such formal attire as a suit and tie, there’s still a fine line between what’s acceptable and what should be avoided at all costs.... Read more »

TDD is misleading if you don’t realize that it is more about software design and teamwork than testing. According to the authors, an Agile programmer using TDD to write “test-first” code can think about what functionality they want from the code and then partner with a tester to make sure all aspects of the code are performing to that standard of functionality.
No one actually knows how AI and advanced automation will affect future job opportunities. Predictions about what types of jobs will be replaced and how fast vary widely. One commonly cited study from 2013 estimated that roughly 47 percent of U.S. jobs could be lost over the next decade or two because they involve work that is easily automated. Other reports—noting that jobs often involve multiple tasks, some of which might be easily automated while others are not—have come up with a smaller percentage of occupations that machines could make obsolete. A recent study by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development estimates that around 9 percent of U.S. jobs are at high risk. But the other part of the employment equation—how many jobs will be created—is essentially unknowable. In 1980, who could have predicted this decade’s market for app developers?
Summary: Provides test automation for end-to-end scenarios across multiple endpoints with support for REST, web services and over 120 protocols/message types. Parasoft SOAtest creates extensible and reusable tests. In addition to API testing, it also offers SOA testing, web and performance testing, web UI testing, runtime error testing, API security testing, service virtualization, and development testing.

"Who's every heard of the Macrobiotic Diet? Not me. This puppy has only 2 reviews on Google Play, so apparently it's not exactly sweeping the world by storm. As for the list, I'm not even sure what a "macro tracker app" is! Macro has a very specific meaning in the computer world, and it's got nothing to do with diets! And it's a poor abbreviation for Macrobiotic if that's what was intended."
In this article, I'll discuss some of the best practices I discovered through on my own journey toward automation. These are practices you should consider when automating your testing cycles to make sure you build a suite of tests that work well and can be maintained throughout the life of your application. (This article is based on a presentation that can be viewed in full here.)
The total number of relays, cam timers and drum sequencers can number into the hundreds or even thousands in some factories. Early programming techniques and languages were needed to make such systems manageable, one of the first being ladder logic, where diagrams of the interconnected relays resembled the rungs of a ladder. Special computers called programmable logic controllers were later designed to replace these collections of hardware with a single, more easily re-programmed unit.
Even if you hate cleaning, shelling out several hundred dollars for a robot vacuum can seem a little extravagant. But at $229, the Ecovacs Deebot N79S is relatively affordable, and offers more for the price than any other vacuum we've tested. In addition to long battery life and manual steering, it supports features we typically see in far more expensive models such as app control and Amazon Alexa compatibility. It also delivers a stronger clean than other vacuums we've tested in this price range.
This page is NOT designed to tell you what software testing tool is “best” (disclaimer: we’re a software testing tool vendor, so we are obviously biased).  Rather, we aimed to compile the ultimate list of software testing tools lists—so you can rapidly research the available options and make your own decision on what software testing tools you want to evaluate.
Engineers can now have numerical control over automated devices. The result has been a rapidly expanding range of applications and human activities. Computer-aided technologies (or CAx) now serve as the basis for mathematical and organizational tools used to create complex systems. Notable examples of CAx include Computer-aided design (CAD software) and Computer-aided manufacturing (CAM software). The improved design, analysis, and manufacture of products enabled by CAx has been beneficial for industry.[55]

In a typical hard wired motor start and stop circuit (called a control circuit) a motor is started by pushing a "Start" or "Run" button that activates a pair of electrical relays. The "lock-in" relay locks in contacts that keep the control circuit energized when the push button is released. (The start button is a normally open contact and the stop button is normally closed contact.) Another relay energizes a switch that powers the device that throws the motor starter switch (three sets of contacts for three phase industrial power) in the main power circuit. Large motors use high voltage and experience high in-rush current, making speed important in making and breaking contact. This can be dangerous for personnel and property with manual switches. The "lock in" contacts in the start circuit and the main power contacts for the motor are held engaged by their respective electromagnets until a "stop" or "off" button is pressed, which de-energizes the lock in relay.[10]
Manual software testing is performed by a human sitting in front of a computer carefully going through application screens, trying various usage and input combinations, comparing the results to the expected behavior and recording their observations. Manual tests are repeated often during development cycles for source code changes and other situations like multiple operating environments and hardware configurations. An automated testing tool is able to playback pre-recorded and predefined actions, compare the results to the expected behavior and report the success or failure of these manual tests to a test engineer. Once automated tests are created they can easily be repeated and they can be extended to perform tasks impossible with manual testing. Because of this, savvy managers have found that automated software testing is an essential component of successful development projects.
Once processes are built and tested it's time to roll them out to the relevant users. In some cases this could be the entire employee population, in other cases, it could be a single department, outside vendors or customers. Access to processes is provided through a Web portal where users can submit requests, check statuses or complete tasks depending on their role. This self-service portal houses all processes and forms but many employees will also interact through email alerts.
Hazen uses the term “automagic” to get people to think about what their goals are for using automation tools and technology for their specific project needs. He cautions against assuming the use of automation testing tools is a cure-all or silver bullet solution. As Hazen points out, automation testing is still dependent on the people performing the testing.

SharePoint is a cloud-based Microsoft product that can be used for BPA and for document storage and collaboration. Training for SharePoint goes from the basics (for users who will stick to low-level functionality) to the advanced superuser and even administrator designation (for professionals who want to act as their company’s point of contact for their internal or external SharePoint site). Programming courses in SharePoint are also available for professionals who need to code new applications.
This approach involves finding a specialty within your profession that wouldn’t be economical to automate. In Boston, near the headquarters of Dunkin’ Donuts, a reporter recently peered into “the secret world of the Dunkin’ Donuts franchise kings.” One of them, Gary Joyal, makes a good living (if his Rolls-Royce is any indication) by connecting buyers and sellers of Dunkin’ Donuts franchises. As the Boston Globe put it, Joyal “uses his encyclopedic knowledge of franchisees—and often their family situations, income portfolios, and estate plans—to make himself an indispensable player for buyers and sellers alike.” So far he has helped to broker half a billion dollars’ worth of deals.
“The best way to optimize marketing automation is to connect it with a customer relationship management (CRM) platform. If your business brings in revenue by combining marketing and sales campaigns, then your system should be integrated. Connecting your marketing automation platform with your CRM will help marketers on your team connect crucial campaign strategies with the financial outcomes. This will provide your salespeople with better visibility into prospecting and leads. It also allows your marketing team to hand leads over to sales without manually exporting anything.”
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