The date: September 26, 1983. The location: Hewlett-Packard in Corvallis, Oregon. The event: The birth of the Pacific Northwest Software Quality Conference.
Software Quality and Testing: The First Conference
Achieving higher quality software through knowledge exchange
Kenneth Oar, HP’s software quality manager, chaired this first conference. Charles Martiny of Tektronix served as co-chair of the board, which was composed of six other members, representing HP, Tek and Oregon State University.
The conference offered attendees presentations by 13 software quality professionals, all from the West Coast, most employed by HP, Tek, Boeing, Mentor Graphics, OSU or Intel.
Keynote speaker, Stephen Sterling of Mentor Graphics, selected as his topic, “Software Quality — The Real World.” As though gazing into a particularly clairvoyant crystal ball, he opened the conference–and 35 years of knowledge exchange–with the following:
“I am really pleased to be participating in this conference. Software quality is something I spend a lot of time worrying about. The fact that so many of you showed up today to discuss this subject and hear other peoples’ views on ‘What is quality?’ and ‘How does one measure?’ and ‘What can we do about?’ indicates the importance of the topic. We expect that we’re going to see a lot more professional activity in this area in the future.”
Indeed we have…
So, as we launch into this 35th year of debating, examining and sharing our knowledge about software quality and testing, we will be mining the past for nuggets like this. And we would ask our members, past and present, to please share any memories, documents or photographs from the early days of PNSQC so that the roots of this organization will be kept healthy as we move into the future.