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Network Monitoring

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March 09, 2011

Network Monitoring: Soasta Shows Off Music Inspired UI at Cloud Connect

By Chris DiMarco, TMCnet Web Editor

While many in the IT space have some level of programming capacity, it isn’t always enough to get at the deeper problems that can plague a website or application. The UI is perhaps the most important part in finding an easier solution for customers to test and address issues with their consumer facing websites. It was with this in mind that Cloud Monitoring provider Soasta developed its CloudTest platform, an innovative test suite that even a novice (or a journalist) can quickly and intuitively understand. The company was at this year’s Cloud Connect expo to offer demos of the suite. 

“The story goes that Ken (Founder of Soasta) had been using a musical program and realized how easy it was to understand even for someone without a musical background, he tries to recreate that in the testing space,” said Dave Murphy senior vice president of delivery at Soasta.

Modeled after music production software like Garage band or Pro Tools, the visual testing environment resembles a mixing board and uses building blocks that allow a user to compose test scenarios by dragging and dropping recorded messages to different test tracks. Each block represents a specific artifact on a site (a .gif, .jpeg, or .fsw for example) and offers them in a color coded and clearly marked capacity. The program breaks down the site and populates these blocks automatically, allowing testers to see which items are getting clicks and which, if any, are causing problems.

The tracks the block fits into represent a number of variables including customer location, volume, browsing patterns and so on. The trick here is to make the flow of actions on the site as organic to the way a real customer might use the product as possible, detecting any problems that could potentially disrupt a purchase event. Theoretically, there is no upper limit to how many page views or customers can simulate at once—if you have the infrastructure to support it, the software can support the tests.

This approach to network testing is so groundbreaking that Soasta recently received a patent for it. “The extended time and specific expertise necessary to conduct performance tests using traditional software has prevented many organizations from testing at all, putting their business-critical websites at significant risk. Soasta's(News - Alert) CloudTest eliminates these obstacles, empowering organizations to easily and quickly develop tests and run them at scale, using our market-proven visual interface and robust platform that delivers the full power of cloud computing,” said Founder and Executive Chairman at Soasta, Ken Gardner in the press release accompanying this news.

Soastra’s intuitive and music inspired UI can empower even those with only rudimentary understanding of program language to seriously rock when it comes to test building and execution. For those about to conduct networking monitoring and application testing we salute you!

Chris DiMarco is a Web Editor for TMCnet. He holds a master's degree in journalism from Quinnipiac University. Prior to joining TMC (News - Alert) Chris worked with e-commerce provider Suresource as a contact center representative and development analyst. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Janice McDuffee