GTAC 2008 – The Value of Small Tests

This is another in a series of posts of my reactions to watching the videos from the Google Test Automation Conference 2008 held in Seattle. The talk The Value of Small Tests (38 minutes long) presented by Christopher Semturs on October 24, 2008 was not what I expected. The slides from the talk can be found here.

I was hoping for a discussion around the broader test case / test suite management and the intersection with test automation. Instead, it discussed the value of creating small tests with limited dependencies and using dependency injection, mocking, etc. Not to say that it is a bad talk – just a quick introduction for these topics. I would say the talk is aimed at getting developers writing and enabling automated testing.

If you are already familiar with dependency injection and mocking, I would not spend the time watching. However, if these concepts are new, it may be valuable.


Testing and December 2009 MSDN Magazine

Even if you are not working on the Microsoft platform, the December 2009 MSDN Magazine has some articles which can be of use to all testers.

In particular, Pairwise Testing with QICT by James McCaffrey provides enough insight into the QICT tool that it can be easily ported to any platform. While Automated Unit Tests for Legacy Code with Pex by Nikhil Sachdeva is specific to Microsoft technologies, Pex is a tool that all testers should become familiar. Finally, Using Agile Techniques to Pay Back Technical Debt by David Laribee has tips that are useful to most test organizations.


GTAC 2008 – Taming the Beast – How to Test an AJAX Application

I am in the process of watching the videos from the GTAC (Google Test Automation Conference) held in Seattle in October 2003. This post contains my notes for the presentation Taming the Beast – How to Test an AJAX Application (1 hour 1 minute) by Markus Clermont & John Thomas held on October 23, 2008.

I am not recommending spending time watching this video. The presentation is not bad. However, it does not translate well to video. There is a lot of interaction with the audience – which is great when you are present at the presentation. However, in the video the audience cannot be heard and the presenters do not repeat many of the questions / responses. In addition, the talk is misnamed. While an AJAX application is used as the example throughout the application, most of the talk is not about how to test an AJAX application. The talk is a good discussion of how to tame automation – automation of any application.

Here are the slide titles:

  • AJAX: A Different Beast
  • An Example GWT Application – (GWT = Taming the Beast – How to Test an AJAX Application)
  • Some Statistics – (At this point there are questions to the audience regarding their automated testing experience.)
  • System Architecture
  • Small Medium Large – (Essentially how much of the application is under test)
  • Testing Layer Pairs
  • Are we done?
  • Comparison
  • Conclusion



Demise of Paper Based Test (Technical) Literature

I commute by bus. I have been doing this for over 9 years. Every work day, I have time set aside where I can read, listen to podcasts, unwind, etc. However, over the last few years, the amount of test (and more generally – technical) literature I can read on the bus has declined. Some have simply gone away (Software Development). Others have converted to an online only presence (InfoWorld). Some no longer provide paper editions to those subscribers who receive copies based on professional qualifications (Better Software). In addition, more and more of the test related content is only available in blogs or other online forums.

Overall, I like online content. It is easier to find items at a later time. Unfortunately, I find that I do not read as carefully/thoroughly when I read something online. I am now purposely trying to read professional development material online with more focus — but it is an effort. Who knows what other changes are ahead of us.