Transpection Explored



I had a great learning experience last night.  Those of you who were at the European Weekend Testers session or who have read my write-up of the session (here) will know that I attempted a technique called Transpection which I had read about previously at

I was not very happy with my attempt: it just did not feel right.  One of the great things about Weekend Testing sessions is that you can try new things in an environment where it does not really matter and everything becomes part of the learning process.

I decided to solicit the help and advice of James Bach to see where I went wrong and understand what I should have been doing so contacted him on Skype.  He readily agreed to help me and demonstrate Transpection for me.  I am publishing the full transcript of that Skype session (see link above) at James’ suggestion because we think it will be of help to other testers.

I have only lightly edited the transcript to put some of the statements into paragraphs to aid readability but the content is all there for you to see.  You will see my own learning process through this and hopefully, for those that want to know more about the technique, understand this really useful aid better.  You will even see where I mistakenly thought James was trying to bring proceedings to a close!

I would like to thank James for his time yesterday evening and for supporting me in this quest.

Feel free to make comments or ask me any questions…


By Stephen Hill

I am a software tester with over twenty years' experience. Prior to that I was a Technical Support Analyst and a Quality Manager. My main testing interests are in manual and exploratory testing. I am a member of the organising committee for the BCS' SIGiST (Special Interest Group in Software Testing). Outside work I love my music, travel, history and, perhaps slightly strangely, the law!


  1. Very good Stephen!

    I’ve been interested in transpecting since I read MichaelB and his use of it with James, then I read a post from Maura van der Linden and her experience of it with James.

    It’s something myself and another tester have been trying to do (sessions post-poned so far due to illness & business trips) – but your description and transcript was very interesting and made me want to do it asap!

    Plus, I’ve now got a different slant on it that I didn’t have before, the aspect of bias (and trying to avoid it), thanks!

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