The power of test suites

Tuesday, 15 Mar 2011

John McNamara:

So in summary, I was able to to use Perl’s test driven development techniques at the unit, class and package level against actual Excel data to accelerate porting of several years of work into several months. Added to this, I now have a comprehensive regression suite so that I can tackle refactoring with the confidence that I am not breaking any existing features.

This doesn’t mean that the module is bug free, it isn’t and end users often find interactions that I haven’t tested, but I can quickly respond to test reports using the same techniques.

All in all, this has meant that the development of Excel::Writer::XLSX has been a lot less painful process than Spreadsheet::WriteExcel and has made me more inclined to add new features.

From the last installment of a three-part series.

(Strictly speaking, this is “pirate testing” rather than real TDD.)