[Community Award 2023] Russ Thomas - The Solutions Whisperer 🏆

Hi Community member, :wave:

Let’s welcome the second winner of our Katalon Community 2023 Year End Award.

Our second category is: The Solutions Whisperer. This award celebrate the most helpful member in our community, one that has provided the most number of insightful solutions :white_check_mark: to others’ questions in 2023.

Once again, the competition for this award was fierce, but we believe @Russ_Thomas took the cake for being the most knowledgeable and helpful member in our community in 2023.

We also got a chance to talk with Russ for a short while for his thoughts and experiences participating on Katalon Community forum. Read more below: :point_down:

1. Can you tell us a bit about yourself? i.e. what you do, where you are from, etc.

Originally from Wales, United Kingdom, now I am living in NW Arkansas, USA and working as the Lead QA Test Analyst at Quality Systems International (QSI).

2. How did you come across the Katalon Platform, and what do you like most about it?

We were using the Telerik product. When I moved to testing I set about finding something better. Katalon won out.

3. How long have you been a member on our forum, and what has been your most memorable topic that you participated in / created?

I believe it was back in 2017. As for my most memorable topic, it is hard to pin down exactly since there have been so many; though I am proudest of my [TIP] How To Help Us Help You! topic as it has helped many newbies to post better questions & problems with more information on their first attempt.

4. What are your three (3) advices for our community members when they run into technical challenges?

  • Don’t test the browser(s). Test the web app running in the browser. I see this a lot on the forum. I used to jump in and tell them, “you don’t work for Google!” but now I rarely do.

  • Learn HTML/CSS/JavaScript. If you don’t know how a web page works under the hood, you will struggle to understand why and how it is failing.

  • Don’t spend/waste time optimizing test case code. It’s already way too fast for the browser to keep up. Spend your time writing another test.

  • When using the forum, search first. Ask second.

  • Ditch the “best practice” mantra. If all you do is follow so-called best practice, you will never be an innovator.

  • PASSES are noise. Focus on FAILS. Use every means at your disposal to reduce noise.

  • Lastly, don’t eat yellow snow. Trust me. :wink:

That’s seven. You’re welcome :smiley:

5. What is your advice for members who wish to become a Solution Whisperer like you?

Refer to my previous answer for more tips. But to expand on that, keep in mind, every time you test a web page, it is “fresh from the factory”. There is no guarantee that it works now based on how it behaved yesterday. Be skeptical of EVERYTHING.

6. What do you hope to see on our community in 2024?

Two things:

  • Better handling of categories. I do believe the old category structure works way better. Nowsaday, I see more and more people are posting in the #miscellaneous category, which I hope the Katalon Community team could address in 2024.
  • Me :sunglasses:

Thank you @Russ_Thomas for all of your efforts and contribution in 2023, as well as your feedback on how to improve the forum. We hope you will continue to be such a valuable member to our community in the future!

Katalon Community team

:information_source: To see all of our Katalon Community 2023 Year End Award winners, simply navigate to the award-2023 tag!


Congratulations @Russ_Thomas :clap::partying_face::clap:


Well deserved, thanks for all your help @Russ_Thomas! :rocket::tada::clap:


This is a very humble appreciation from our team at Katalon. Russ is beyond this and a true community builder! Thanks to all the great contribution Russ!