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Testing GUIs with TextTest and StoryText
Test Refactoring and Macro Recording with GUI shortcuts
Naturally, StoryText can provide GUI simulations for purposes other than tests. It can record a sequence of GUI clicks for any purpose. There are two main benefits to be achieved from this.
Shortcuts for test maintenance
A test writer can extract certain commonly used sequences into a "shortcut". If the system has a login screen for example, every recorded test will need to enter a test username and a test password. This is annoying, so a shortcut can be created for it, which will both save time and increase the expressiveness and maintainability of the test. Where before all tests started with:
set username to test
set password to testpass
perform login
They can now just begin with:
login as test
This can also be used even if a lot of pre-existing tests start with the first sequence. When running GUI tests, TextTest always runs the GUI in record and playback mode simultaneously, to check that what is replayed can also still be recorded. If a new shortcut appears, it is automatically inserted when recording a test if its component parts are executed in order. So, after creating this shortcut, simply re-running all the tests and saving them all would have it universally present.
If you now need to change the login screen in any way, you can do it by just editing the shortcut file and no tests will need to be changed.
To see how this works in practice, look at the relevant StoryText documentation.
Macro Recording by system users
Most people have at one time or another ended up using a GUI in a repetitive way. They generally do not need all of its capabilities, and may have to make 5 or so clicks just to reach the screen they usually work with. Or for example, who hasn't at some time or other been frustrated by constant pop-up dialogues that demand “Are you sure you want to do this?'' or something similar. This can be minimised by good user interface design, but fundamentally applications have to be configurable for their power users, and this can make them unwieldy for their novice users.
The user can simply record a "shortcut" for his repetitive actions. He goes into record mode at the appropriate point, records his usual five clicks (or OKs all his annoying pop-ups), and then gives the script he has recorded a name. A new button appears at the bottom of his screen, which he can click whenever he wishes to repeat what he did. This will save him time and repetitive work.
There is support for this in StoryText, but only for PyGTK apps currently.

Last updated: 05 October 2012