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Test Harnesses are counter productive...

How often do you hear:

'Why do I need to write tests when I've got a perfectly good test harness?'

Now I hear this often and I'm not surprised anymore when I hear it, it's a sign of a dis-functional team where team members don't value the team they only value their output.

I've highlighted the words that give it away:

'Why do I need to write tests when I've got a perfectly good test harness...'

There is no 'I' in 'TEAM'!

Anyone who insists test harnesses are just as good as automated tests is plain wrong.

They're selfish developers who only care about the code they've written - and probably don't get involved with the team. The reason it's selfish is because they might well be able to test all edge cases with their test harness but how is anyone else meant to know how to achieve this. They can't unless they understand exactly how the test harness is constructed and to be used. It's more productive from a team point of view for everyone to write automated tests that are run automatically on checkin & build.

Now more than likely the people who refuse the accept TDD methods are either 'duct tapers' or 'old timers' who in general are past their sell by date anyway - if you can't accept knew ideas then you are definitely in the wrong industry.

At all the 'old timers' - do doctors still regularly recommend leaches?

Awkward Coder


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