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Intelligent Test Automation ILLUSTRATIONS BY STEVE BJÖRKMAN Software Testing Quality Engineering September/October 2000 24 A model-based method for generating tests from a description of an application’s behavior by Harry Robinson Warning: The fairy tale you are about to read is a fib—but it’s short, and the moral is true. O nce upon a product cycle, there were four testers who set out on a quest to test software. started hands-on testing imme- diately, and found some nice bugs. The develop- ment team happily fixed these bugs, and gave Tester 1 a fresh version of the software to test. More testing, more bugs, more fixes. Tester 1 felt productive, and was happy—at least for a while. After several rounds of this find-and-fix cycle, he became bored and bleary-eyed from running virtually the same tests over and over again by hand. When Tester 1 finally ran out of enthusi- asm—and then out of patience—the software was declared “ready to ship.” Customers found it too buggy and bought the competitor’s product. Tester1 This article is provided courtesy of Software Testing & Quality Engineering (STQE) magazine.
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September/October 2000 Software Testing Quality Engineering 25 QUICK LOOK Improving the efficiency of your automated testing through modeling Overcoming the limitations of hands-on and static automation testing started testing by hand, but soon de- cided it made more sense to create test scripts that would perform the keystrokes automatically. After carefully figuring out tests that would exercise useful parts of the software, Tester 2 recorded the actions in scripts. These scripts soon numbered in the hun- dreds. At the push of a button, the scripts would spring to life and run the software through its paces. Tester 2 felt clever, and was happy—at least for a while. The scripts required a lot of maintenance when the software changed. He spent weeks arguing with developers to stop changing the software be- cause it broke the automated tests. Eventually, the scripts required so much maintenance that there was little time left to do testing. When the software was released, customers found lots of bugs that the scripts didn’t cover. They stopped buy- ing the product and decided to wait for version 2.0. Tester2 didn’t want to maintain hundreds of automated test scripts. She wrote a test program that went around randomly clicking and pushing buttons in the application. This “random” test program was hypnotic to watch, and it found a lot of crash- ing bugs. Tester 3 enjoyed uncovering such dramatic defects, and was happy—at least for a while. Since the random test program could only
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This note was uploaded on 08/25/2011 for the course EEL 5881 taught by Professor Staff during the Spring '09 term at University of Florida.

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