The Magic of Automated Testing

March 06, 2023

Mike Bland has a new presentation out on software quality:

We’ll discuss why internal software quality matters, why it’s often unappreciated and sacrificed, and what we can do to improve it. More to the point, we’ll discuss the importance of instilling a quality culture to promote the proper mindset first. Only on this foundation will seeking better processes, better tools, better metrics, or AI-generated test cases yield the outcomes we can live with.

Why It Matters

Bland spent the past few years at Apple helping them adopt a culture of testing. He has done the same at Google and the federal government. A robust test suite allowed me and a Google Summer of Code intern to upgrade Lumen Database from Rails 4 to 5 without any hiccups, and I have been a believer ever since.

Automated Testing is a Secret Sauce of Software Engineering

Automated testing serves two functions:

  • Forces you to think about and look at your code through a different lens, making it more likely you will spot a bug.
  • Prevents the introduction of new bugs by making sure existing functionality does not break with code changes.

It takes effort to learn this tool, but it is a powerful one.

Go Deeper

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This work by Matt Zagaja is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.