Prior to working at Microsoft, on occasion I've had the misfortune to work on projects where the test team has consisted of developers who weren't considered as good enough to work on the real development team. The result, as could easily be predicted, is that the testing wasn't done at all well, and the application's quality suffered immeasureablly.
So it's been an absolute pleasure working in the patterns & practices group, where the testing team (consisting of both Microsoft employees and external vendors) is highly skilled and dedicated. In addition to providing great, proactive testing on our deliverables, they are also always pushing the boundaries of what it means to test guidance deliverables such as application blocks. Whether you are a tester, or a developer or architect that works with testers, you should check out some of the great deliverables our test team has produced. As a follow up to their previous guides about Testing Application Blocks and Testing Software Patterns, our test team is now working on a new Architecture Testing Guide, and a preview is available to download and review now. Here's what Ed Lafferty, one of our test managers, has to say about this guide:
The patterns & practices Architecture Testing Guide is designed to help project stakeholders, software designers, developers, and testers understand the process of testing software architecture before the code is implemented. The paper describes an approach and methodology for testing the design of a system, and describes the user-specific viewpoints that you must consider during the testing process. The Architecture Testing Guide walks through the process of testing a system from each viewpoint, and provides instructions, examples, and best practices along the way.
More on this, and other p&p testing topics, can be found at the p&p Test Blog.