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Microsoft: Better testing can speed development

Software maker is working on something called the "Experimentation Platform," which it hopes will accelerate its product development cycle through side-by-side testing.

One of the reasons that software development takes so darn long is the amount of testing it takes.

A new feature has to be tested to make sure it is better than the old way of doing things and that it doesn't mess anything else up.

Microsoft is hoping a new tool can help make the testing process more methodical and, by doing so, speed things up. The company calls it the Experimentation Platform.

Mary Jo Foley of ZDNet had the scoop on this. Essentially, it is based on the longtime premise of A/B testing, that is giving one set of users one option and a second set another option and seeing which they like better.

Leading the charge on this is Ronny Kohavi, who joined Microsoft from Amazon in 2005.