Monday, January 4, 2010

Testing Backlash: Recent, well grounded opinions questioning the value of TDD and unit-testing

It is 2010. I declare that #TDD is no longer controversial.

We all know the Gartner Hype Cycle for technology adaption:

Sometimes I wonder where on this curve we are concerning unit-testing and Test Driven Development (TDD)?

Just recently there seem to be a movement to the "Through of Disillusionment" with several fairly well grounded articles questioning the value of unit-testing and Test Driven Development (TDD):

  • Problems with TDD an Essay by Andrew Dalke. Heavily discussed on his blog and on Hacker News.
  • Chris Ashton's post: It's OK Not to Write Unit Tests
  • Ayende's posts: Even tests has got to justify themselves and re: Are you smart enough to do without TDD
  • And finally Luce Francis brilliant presentation: Testing is Overrated (matching blog post, slides)

  • On the other hand there seems to be prove that TDD is valuable:
  • Empirical Studies Show Test Driven Development Improves Quality
  • Maximilien-Williams study
  • Uncle Bobs TDD Triage

  • 1 comment:

    1. The Garner Hype Cycle starts with a technology which was accepted, then looks back at the history of acceptance. Because it presumes final success, it can't be used as a way to predict future success given a position on the curve.

      For example, where would CORBA fit on that line? It had the hump then drop, and it still exists, but D-BUS has replaced it for the most part. Or going back in time, Taligent or BeOS.


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