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Re: [XP] write customer tests first

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  • Ron Jeffries
    ... This should make for an interesting discussion. I feel strongly that I need the acceptance tests before I m going to be done programming: I want to run
    Message 1 of 35 , Nov 1, 2004
      On Monday, November 1, 2004, at 2:40:31 AM, maps@... wrote:

      > I'd be interested in the advantages (and maybe disadvantages) you see in codinging the acceptance tests
      > first. Coding unit tests first (TDD) is very good documented in the
      > different XP-books but I can find nearly
      > nothing about test first and acceptance tests.

      This should make for an interesting discussion.

      I feel strongly that I need the acceptance tests before I'm going to be
      done programming: I want to run them to be sure that I've done what was

      I get some real value from knowing before I start what a few of them will
      be: it helps me shape my design and programming.

      I do not generally get value from making one acceptance test work, then
      another, then another, in the way that I do with unit tests. But this might
      be a function of the particular tools I use, and of the fact that, working
      mostly alone, I'd have to write the tests myself and it is usually easier
      to write unit tests with the same "meaning". If the acceptance tests were
      being fed to me, I might use them in the same kind of guiding way that I
      use TDD unit tests now.

      HOWEVER: when I do TDD, the test guides the code, and the code guides the
      next test. Acceptance tests are kind of given from the outside. I could
      /select/ the next test to do from the list, but I can't /create/ the next
      test in the same way that I do with unit tests. That makes me suspect that
      the inherent rhythm of customer-provided acceptance tests is always going
      to be different from that of TDD with unit tests.

      Let's see who else chimes in ...

      Ron Jeffries
      It is not the strongest of the species that survive, not the most intelligent,
      but the one most responsive to change. -- Charles Darwin
    • Amir Kolsky
      Yup Amir Kolsky XP& Software
      Message 35 of 35 , Nov 6, 2004

        Amir Kolsky
        XP& Software

        >-----Original Message-----
        >From: Kent Beck [mailto:kentb@...]
        >Sent: Sunday, November 07, 2004 6:16 AM
        >To: extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com
        >Subject: RE: [XP] write customer tests first
        >I misunderstood you. My mistake. What I hear you saying now is
        >that if people are unhappy on an XP team there are serious
        >consequences. Is that accurate?
        >Kent Beck
        >Three Rivers Institute
        >> -----Original Message-----
        >> From: Amir Kolsky [mailto:kolsky@...]
        >> Sent: Friday, November 05, 2004 11:32 AM
        >> To: extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com
        >> Subject: RE: [XP] write customer tests first
        >> I said: "You cannot have members of your community unahppy in XP, at
        >> least not for long." It is a matter of fact that some people
        >might be
        >> unhappy as a result of someone's actions, be it you or someone else.
        >> For example, if some new guy gets hired and he happened to sit by a
        >> CRT screen when everyone else has LCD, he'll probably be
        >unhappy. But
        >> that's acceptable. The tradeoffs between reality and happiness are
        >> always there... However, you cannot have any single member of your
        >> community unhappy for a long time as this will cause your team to be
        >> inaffective, or that person to leave.
        >> One of the worse things you can do is alienate your customer.
        >> Especially if that customer is one of many (which is
        >something that we
        >> have ran across recently). If a customer is consistently ignored he
        >> will be unhappy. You have to indulge that customer in the planning
        >> game (as the lead customer, that is) or he might turn
        >against you. In
        >> our case a customer was trying to do things the XP way (from his
        >> perspective) which went against the wish of another major player. He
        >> lost every time. Eventually he started to voice concerns that the
        >> whole project is going to fail. We had a tough time (As
        >> coaches) to make people understand that even though what he
        >asked for
        >> might not be the *exact* right thing to do next, it was the
        >> politically correct thing to do, and since this calmed
        >things down in
        >> the group, it had business value.
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