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Innovation

Innovation

The refugee crisis, political events and the social reaction to them, natural disasters such as Hurricane Harvey or Hurricane Irma, the sentiments of people or central banks… there is an ever-increasing number of events whose economic impact, in a world of growing risk and uncertainty, is hard to gauge using traditional methods. That’s where ‘Big Data’ and ‘Data Science’ techniques come in, helping to quantify these trends from micro to macro level.

Madrid hosted last week the Service Design Global Conference (SDGC17), a leading event in the world of service design that pays special attention to how this discipline is changing the world of banking. BBVA took part in one of the sessions to explain how design is, without a doubt, a key element in the success of its financial products and in satisfying customer needs at a time of great challenges for banking.

At BBVA Labs, we follow the test pyramid concept proposed by Mike Cohn. We have a large collection of unit tests that are easy to implement and which are run at every change in code; a collection of acceptance tests which are run whenever the previous tests are passed; and finally, end-to-end tests that are only run to unlock a function.

The complexity of implementing these tests increases as you move up in the pyramid. End-to-end tests, where service integration is also tested, requires putting in place the infrastructure, the services to be tested and the integrated services. Setting up a testing environment, test implementation and execution are significantly more complex than unit tests.

In addition to the cost of running these tests, another problem arises when a service changes the message format. Big bang deployment (deploying the service and its dependents at the same time) is to be avoided as this type of change breaks the continual deployment) . Therefore, for a period of time, the service provider has to offer support for two versions of the message while customers update to the new one, but consumer tests only look at one version of the producer.

At BBVA Labs, we conducted an experiment to reduce the number of services to deploy in tests and to ensure that communication among services from different domains is maintained throughout the software product’s life cycle in a continual deployment system. The decision was made to evaluate current tools to conduct Consumer Driven Contract testing (CDC testing o contract testing) for this experiment.