Nowadays most products are made in automated factories. Workpieces are lifted by robotic arms, transported by conveyor belts between the workstations and those are moved by electric motors. The engines and their associated control devices must be tested before they get into the factory, as their failure can cause enormous financial damage.
Testing of drive systems is done under laboratory conditions, simulating the factory environment. This means that many devices need to be used at the same time, every time in a different configuration. Sometimes it is not easy to set up these test configurations, and it is not certain that the desired configuration can be created from the toolkit of the lab. The drive tester has to check before each test how and where the configuration can be implemented, and then turn on the selected devices. Then the tester can do the job manually or run an automated test case.
In my work I have shortened the pre-testing phase: the tester only needs to determine what kind of devices to work with, and then start running the automated test. To do this, I created a user interface to describe the available devices in a lab and specify the elements in the desired configuration. My program finds the exact devices in the lab on the requested configuration and all other information needed to turn them on, and then the test automation system can start the whole configuration itself, based on the results of the search.
This system will shorten the set up time before an automated test, and it can even search in multiple labs’ devices. Since this task is not closely related to testing, the constructed search program will probably be a part of the test management system.