Re: Testivus - Testing For The Rest Of Us
Posted: Feb 9, 2007 3:54 PM
> Alberto: in general, I agree with your sentiment; however,
> I do want to point to one part of it that I find a little
> > <h2>Less testing dogma, more testing karma</h2>
> The one problem I have with this statement is the people
> who confuse "dogma" with "suggestion". Quite often, when I
> espoused TDD as a design technique, or defended JUnit's
> "limitations" as having good influence on my design,
> people accused me of being dogmatic. It seems to be the
> "silver bullet" argument designed to shut down any
> suggestion that difficulty testing indicates a design
> problem worth exploring. While I agree that suggestions
> made with little experience and with little understanding
> of the other person's situation can be dogmatic,
> suggestions made with thorough experience and careful
> consideration of the other person's situation is most
> certainly not dogmatic. I suppose it's not always easy to
> tell the difference.
> So while I agree with the idea of less dogma, more karma,
> I'd like to add a footnote: "Be sure you can tell the
> difference between advice and dogma."
> Take care.
Great to hear from you. I "sort-of" see your point. I say "sort-of" because I believe that most people can differentiate between dogma and well-informed recommendations/suggestions.
Taking your book "JUnit Recipes" and your various posts as a example, it's very clear to me (and I believe to everyone who reads it) that you are offering options and suggestions. The advice is in the form: "X works best for Y" or "Consider Z", or "If you do A, it will make testing easier." I don't think I've ever heard you say things like "this is the only way".
But, and I won't name names, there are a lot of people out there who claim that the only way to achieve "salvation" through testing is to practice X, only X, and all of X - all the time. That's what I consider dogma and that's what turns a lot of people off the idea of developer testing.
I am actually surprised that most people did not object to the phrasing of "Less testing dogma, more testing karma".
After writing it I realized that, perhaps, less should have been replaced by no: "No testing dogma, just testing karma."
Should there be any dogma in Testivus?
I believe so, a movement without at least one code tenet is a movement about nothing - to stay with the Seinfeld theme.
Perhaps the only dogma is that "developers should take responsibility for testing their own code."