Cucumber-In-The-YARD (CITY): A Requirements Documentation Tool
CITY is now yard-cucumber.
The change to the project is name and also structure. YARD supports automatic
loading of plugins that start with prefix
yard-, thus the name change and
some code changes to assist with this better integration.
Cucumber-In-The-Yard is a YARD extension that processes Cucumber features, scenarios, steps, tags, step definitions, and even transforms to provide documentation similar to what you expect to how YARD displays classes, methods and constants.This tools bridges the gap of having feature files found in your source code and true documentation that your team, product owners and stakeholders can use.
There are two things that I enjoy: a test framework written in my own Domain Specific Language (DSL) that is easily understood by all those on a project and the ability for all participants to easily read, search, and view the tests.
Cucumber is an amazing tool that allowed me to define exercisable requirements. My biggest obstacle was bringing these requirements to my team, the product owner, and other stakeholders.
Initially I tried to expose more of the functionality by providing freshly authored requirements through email, attachments to JIRA tickets, or linked in wiki documents. None of these methods were very sustainable or successful. First, I was continually pushing out the documents to those interested. Second, the documents were displayed to the user in text without the syntax highlighting that was exceedingly helpful for quickly understanding the requirements.
I also found it hard to share the test framework that I had put together with another developer that joined the team. It was difficult to direct them around the features, tags, step definitions, and transforms. It was when I started to convey to them the conventions that I had established that I wished I had a tool that would allow me to provide documentation like one would find generated by a great tool like YARD.
So I set out to integrate Cucumber objects like features, backgrounds, scenarios, tags, steps, step definitions, and transforms into a YARD template. From my quick survey of the landscape I can see that the my needs are different than a lot of others that use Cucumber. The entire project that spawned this effort was solely to exercise the functionality of a different, large project and so there is a huge dependence on having the requirements documented. This is in contrast to other projects that are using this on a small scale to test the functionality of small software component. Though, ultimately, I realized that the functionality may provide a valuable tool for many as I feel it helps more solidly bridge the reporting of the documentation by putting a coat of paint on it.