[DOCS] Writing SUnit test to document Squeak

Stephane Ducasse ducasse at iam.unibe.ch
Sat Feb 15 21:30:56 UTC 2003

By the way diego and franscico ported SUnit 3.1 to Squeak and wrote
a changeset to remove the old SUnit version. This will be available 

Thanks guys.


On Saturday, February 15, 2003, at 10:10 PM, Hannes Hirzel wrote:

> Hi all
> I participated at the SmallNic (Smalltalk picnic) at Berne today. We
> were
> 14 participants. It was generally meant to be for all Smalltalk 
> dialects
> but had a strong Squeak slant.
> Marcus Denker from the German Squeak Users group came up from
> Karlsruhe. The Squeak 3.2 CDROM they have done is a helpful tool for 
> the
> Squeak
> community. It contains among other things a snapshot of the minnow 
> swiki
> and
> the complete mailing list archive.
> We first had  some short demonstrations (among them SmaCC).
> Then we split into various groups doing different things.
> Stephane Ducasse, Alain Fischer and I wrote a unit test for Morphic 
> (the
> code
> is in another thread).
> I have known for quite some time about the SUnit framework
> but practically I didn't use it.
> I did most of my testing just in Workspaces, which I kept.
> The discussion of this week motivated me to do write 10 tests 
> yesterday.
> Today Stephane, Joseph and Diego pointed me at some additional issues.
> Stephane was able to convince me that unit tests may really be
> a substantial part of a good documentation.
> Before I was thinking of unit tests only as something additional to
> do to write a very robust application (checking for boundary conditions
> and things like that) . It is true that unit tests are good for that as
> well.
> I suggest that we try out using unit test as documentation
> in the next few weeks and see how it works. That includes sending
> them as change set attachments to this list and ask list members
> to give their feedback.
> Joseph Pelrine mentioned as well that SUnit is available on nearly all
> Smalltalk
> platforms. He is a member of the SUnit development team.
> Actually you may think of unit tests as little executable scenarios.
> As the Smalltalk language is easy to read like a written text
> (as a sequence of subject-verb-object phrases)
> if the method names are well chosen
> you may consider unit test code as directly beeing documentation.
> To learn using the SUnit tool is very easy.
> Some tests themselves are very easy to write as well. (10 minutes or 
> so)
> Others take hours. The most difficult thing is hunting for the right
> method names and trying to reverse engineer the original intent of the
> programmer.
> However this is the problem in any kind of documentation work.
> Each unit test shows a particular way of dealing
> with a particular type of object or a combination of them.
> If the names of the unit tests are well chosen you have a very handy
> documentation *within* a list of the SystemBrowser.
> And the good thing is that the documentation can be validated
> automatically
> by just hitting the 'RUN ALL' button.
> I suggest that we look into this issue in the documentation team. This
> should
> not hinder anybody else just sending in unit tests to the list. Even
> just a
> single test class with a single method is welcome!
> We will happily harvest them! Make sure you include the [DOCS] tag in
> the subject line.
> Regards
> Hannes
Prof. Dr. Stéphane DUCASSE (ducasse at iam.unibe.ch) 
  "if you knew today was your last day on earth, what would you do
  different? ... especially if, by doing something different, today
  might not be your last day on earth" Calvin&Hobbes

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