Alexander Beletsky's development blog

My profession is engineering

SeleniumCamp conference in Kiev

I had a chance to be present on a SeleniumCamp conference that took place 26 of February. It was first Selenium dedicated conference in a world, so it was bad idea to miss it. Moreover, my colleague from Dnepropetrovsk Anton was coming there also, so we had a good time to meet each other again.

Event has been organized by Xp Injection group. I’ve been listen those guys last year on Agileee, I also read their blog from time to time, so I was pretty confident of what is going be all about. Event took place in Bratislava hotel. Here is a brief summary of stuff I heard there:

  • David Burns was the one who did open speech. He is Senior Software Engineer in Test at Mozilla working as the Automation Lead in WebQA and one of Selenium Core commiter. David was describing Selenium 2 and WebDriver ideas as primary part on Selenium 2 framework. In spite of Selenium RC, Web driver:
    • Uses native browser API, so works much more faster
    • Reduces and clear API
    • More reliable
    It means that WebDrivers should be tool of choice for functional testing in nearest future. As far as I get Selenium 2 is not officially release and currently in Beta phase.
  • Kirill Klimov did an speech about his experience of deployment Selemium in company. He shared some pros and cons of each Selenium umbrella products: from Core to Grid. They stated to use Selenium from IDE, seems the most easy scenario of using functional tests. Then they switched to Core and RC. Kirill has very good understanding of “what’s going on” and summaries speech with several recommendations I think very useful:
    • Don’t be hurry to start up
    • Understand the difference in tools and pick up right one
    • Try to elaborate in several years perspective
    Slides from his presentation is here
  • Mairbek Khadikov shared his own vision of web applications testing automation. Through 2 years of usage Selenium they came up with bunch of tests and realized the power of automation. Most important that value shared between business and development. He touch such important issues as performance, tests isolations. It is very important to write tests that might be read by non-technical guys. In such case tests starting to be a part of project documentation and used not only be development team. He also noticed that test should be architecture to be run in parallel as early as possible, it is just matter of time then you going to run tests by Grid (for instance) and you will meet a problem. He did several examples of Tests written on Java, so developers had a little fun to see the code. His presentation is stored here.
  • Alexey Rezhchikov did one of the most impressive speech as for me. He works on huge and high complexity project(s) for Ebay Motors (as far as I got). They are dealing with complex requirements, multicultural, high loaded sites with difficult configuration management. He clearly described problems any big project meet in a way towards Release. Nevertheless, they’ve implemented and successfully using solution stack based on Selenium platform (not only). Using different level of testing to meet acceptance goal, they are very flexible in decision “go or not to go with automated test” and “what kind of test is OK for this particular scenario”. I also bit impressed by usage a Feature Flags as opposite way of multibranch development. . His presentation here.
  • Nikolai Alimenkov was selling ideas of using Wiki as “live” requirements. The whole approach back us to Fitnesse ideas of keeping requirements in a Wiki-style storage, placing acceptance conditions into to tables and “somehow” run Fitnesse tests against target applications. With my big respect to Robet C. Martin, original developer of Fitnesse, I don’t believe that stuff works. I don’t believe that Product Owner will ever work with requirements in Wiki will run them. Moreover, it seems a big overhead to me to support all that wiki’s in up-to-date in world of changing requirements. Nikolai showed Fitnesse based tools as Fitnium, Selenesse and some tests examples but it was to artificial to me. You can find his presentation here.
  • Nikolai Kolesnik seems to have a good plan to describe BDD, but was quite nervous and shy that interfered him to make a good speech. Nevertheless, he expressed his understanding and application of BDD for real projects, pitfals and solutions based on Selenium RC. You can find his presentation here.

In short, I enjoyed the conference.. but I would not say it is something I expected. Most speeches I visited, was a kind of “too many word’s, too few real examples”. Guys, please if you are talking about product for developers - show me the code. All the idea’s of ATDD, BDD, Acceptance testing, Wiki are requirements are already sold years ago, don’t do the job that is already done. But, show some your projects, show real test cases, show examples.

I would like to THANK my company who make it possible to me to visit this conference.

PS. for foreign guys: Bratislava hotel is very cold, avoid it to stay on winter time :).