RE: New query: Scripting languages to support software testing

Subject: RE: New query: Scripting languages to support software testing
From: "Dan Goldstein" <DGoldstein -at- riveraintech -dot- com>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 29 Feb 2012 17:01:50 -0500

Many thanks to Jimmy, Lee, and Jessica for their responses. I'll be
studying C# and Object Oriented Programming, probably in parallel.

For me, I think the best study mode would be a series of interactive
sessions online (as opposed to a passive tutorial, video, book, or live
classroom experience). Does anyone have a recommendation? Reasonable
costs will be covered by the company, so it would be better to find
something with enough positive reviews to justify the cost.


-----Original Message-----
From: jimmy -at- breck-mckye -dot- com
Sent: Monday, February 27, 2012 11:28 AM
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: Re: New query: Scripting languages to support software testing

Most languages can be used to script other components, they just need an
appropriate API.

That being said, some languages will meet certain tasks better than
others. Scripts are math-lite applications that don't need to be
compiled into binary, but do need to be readily maintainable and easy to
arrange into functions, objects and libraries. You ideally want an
expressive language that can be used by your colleagues in tow. That
suggests two options: either continue with your QA friend's choice of C#
or work in a language like Python, which is extremely expressive and can
be used usefully without _much_ prerequisite programming experience.

That being said, without wanting to query your abilities, I'm not sure
if this is a job I'd otherwise usually give a technical author. Writing
scripts should be seen as a kind of development, rather than an
'advanced' QA task. Good script functions should be object-orientated,
properly encapsulated and written for adaptability and long-term reuse.
That's not something a non-developer can necessarily do, and it's even
something I'd be wary of giving to a QA analyst. As such, I would be
clear with my line manager that I might need a little time getting up to
speed.

> * Methods of initial study (classroom, book, Web site, etc.)

I'd suggest self-learning with an IDE in one window and a web tutorial
in another. Be sure to read a little on OOP concepts and bits about the
'theory' of creating maintainable software.

> * TW success and horror stories in writing scripts for software
> testing

I did this in my previous job... but I was QA Lead, with tech comms as
something I championed when I could get the resources (i.e. rarely). All
I can say is not to take short cuts, always to document your code, to
aspire to DRY (Don't Repeat Yourself) and never to let release pressures
force you to write a hacky or brittle test script. Good luck!





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References:
New query: Scripting languages to support software testing: From: Dan Goldstein
Re: New query: Scripting languages to support software testing: From: jimmy

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