You Bet Your Life - Playing the Automation Tool Selection Game

In 1947, the game show You Bet Your Life premiered on ABC Radio, hosted by the inimitable Groucho Marx. The gameplay required contestants to bet some of their bankroll on whether or not they could answer the next question. For our purposes, that question is “What’s the best automation tool?”

It’s a valid question, right? You've asked it; I've asked it. The concern is not the asking of the question, but rather when the question is asked. The “best tool” question is often the first one asked when planning an automation initiative but perhaps we should have more information before we can judiciously decide upon one tool or another.

In this session, Paul Grizzaffi will explain how information such as test strategy, intended audience, and environment is relevant to tool choice. Attendees will hear prerequisites to asking the “best tool” question so that they have an appropriate context in which to answer it. He will also introduce the notion of “most appropriate in class”.

Set against a whimsical game show backdrop, attendees leave this session armed with information that will enable them to have a better chance of answering the “best tool” question and not lose their bankroll.

Note that this session will give you valuable context for making a decision regarding automation tools. This session cannot tell you “the tool to rule them all” or provide a cheat sheet of which tool to match every situation; much like unicorn tears and the Tooth Fairy, those things do not exist.


As a Principal Automation Architect at Magenic, Paul Grizzaffi is following his passion of providing technology solutions to testing and QA organizations, including automation assessments, implementations, and through activities benefiting the broader testing community. An accomplished keynote speaker and writer, Paul has spoken at both local and national conferences and meetings. He is an advisor to Software Test Professionals and STPCon, as well as a member of the Industry Advisory Board of the Advanced Research Center for Software Testing and Quality Assurance (STQA) at UT Dallas where he is a frequent guest lecturer. Paul enjoys sharing his experiences and learning from other testing professionals; his mostly cogent thoughts can be read on his blog at

Paul Grizzaffi

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