Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Developer testing

Developer testing - an oxymoron?

Developers love coding.
Coding ain't done till it is tested.
Developers hate testing.
I have noticed four traps that discourage developers from testing. I have named them (in no particular order) the test-later trap, the coverage trap, the one-tool trap and the foosball trap.

The test-later trap

This is probably the most common trap. In my company, this is probably a residual practice from "our waterfall" days. When code piles up, developer testing becomes daunting and dreary.

The coverage trap

All fixes are not free. Some back fire too. 
Long, long ago (perhaps not so long!), some one had an idea. If we cover (not test, mind you!) all the code that we have written, all is well. 
Which respectable developer would like to do this work?

The one-tool trap

It is not enough that we test all that we code, all those tests need be run again as regression. This would be difficult to achieve if all of us don't use the same tool. If our software is in maintenance, we should probably continue to add tests to the same (sometimes archaic) tool.

The foosball trap

I love coding because it is like playing football. There are a few rules, but I can always play in my style. I can deftly pass it to the striker near the box or curve it in like the great Italian playmaker. 
When someone says "don't write a line of code until ...", well! Who wants to code or test like that?

So much for complaining.
Any suggestions to happily marry coding and testing? 
See my next post.

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