Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Hiding a Swing UI Test Run

We've recently been doing a little work in Swing, and being the pervasive testers that we are, this means doing some Swing UI tests.

We played with a few Swing UI testing frameworks briefly, and settled on Fest, for now. (Incidentally, Swing UI testing frameworks are typically inactive projects with inactive communities and not nearly as mature as web UI testing frameworks or non-UI java testing frameworks).

In order to get these tests running on our build / continuous integration server, we needed a solution to run Swing tests on a headless server. One of my colleagues had previously used VNC for this purpose, so we quickly adapted that approach to the build.

I've only just realized that this same approach can be used to hide the UI test run from the main X Windows session, so that you can continue to use your windowing environment without having windows popping up, appearing and disappearing, and otherwise making it difficult to work.

Accordingly, I've done the following:

sudo apt-get install vncserver
vncserver :2
DISPLAY=:2 mvn clean test
This is an immense improvement. Now we can run our UI tests without interrupting the rest of our workflow.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Toronto: High-Turnout for Tech Events?

I was interested to learn that both Joel Spolsky, on the FogBugz World Tour and Mike Chambers at Adobe's On AIR Bus Tour said that their Toronto stops had one of the highest (if not, in fact, the highest) turnouts.

To be fair, Mike Chambers did check the numbers and said that Toronto wasn't the highest turnout, just close.

Still -- this is good news. It means that Toronto's a good place to have technology events, conferences, and the like. If we're willing to turn out en masse to hear vendors pitch their products, imagine how many people would show up for something actually interesting. Although we've got Agile 2007 headed our way next year, I'd like to see more conferences make a showing here.

And, no, NFJS, out by the airport doesn't really count.