Skip to content
Branch: master
Clone or download
Fetching latest commit…
Cannot retrieve the latest commit at this time.
Permalink
Type Name Latest commit message Commit time
Failed to load latest commit information.
jasmine
.gitignore
README.md
code.js
report.html
tests.js

README.md

Intro to Testing in JS

Summary

This is an introduction to automated testing in JavaScript. The idea behind automated testing is to provide immediate feedback on the code you write to solve a problem, add a feature, or fix a bug. The feedback from the tests comes in the form of green passing tests or red failing tests. Tests are functions that test functions to compare the results of the actual output vs. the expected output.

Overview

  • Green tests are passing, red tests mean that the code is incomplete, inaccurate, missing, or you have a syntax error somewhere in your code.
  • Syntax errors in either the tests.js or the code.js file will keep things from running accurately. If you go from a page of many green tests to all red, there's likely a typo or syntax errors somewhere.
  • The approach of writing tests before writing the code that passes is called Test-Driven Development, or TDD.
  • Writing small tests, like the ones provided, is called unit testing.
  • "Unit testing" means to test a piece of functionality as small as a single function. Testing entire applications from end-to-end is another topic.
  • This introduction will introduce unit tests, the TDD practice of writing tests first, and writing the code to pass unit tests.

Prerequisites for this exercise

  • Understanding of valid JavaScript syntax
  • Primitive data types and basic operators in JavaScript
  • Control statements (if, if/else, if/elseif/else)
  • Authoring user defined functions
  • This material can be delivered after data types, conditionals, and functions. This exercise is appropriate to introduce before loops, arrays, objects, etc...

Reference: The Test Driven Development means that tests "drive" the development.

Test Driven Development, TDD, is the process of authoring a test before writing any other code. Here's the TDD workflow:

  1. Step 1: Write the smallest possible test: Identify the simplest, smallest thing you want to confirm. For example, before a function exists, assert that the function is defined.
  2. Step 2: Run all the tests to ensure that the new test fails. We're supposed to see a red, failing test, since there's no code yet to green it. Red means we did the first step correctly. Seeing the newest test turn red is critical because our tests drive the development, not the other way around.
  3. Step 3: Write only enough code to green that newest test. No more, no less. It's OK if things are hard-coded here.
  4. Step 4: Run all tests. We're looking for green tests across the board.
  5. Step 5: Refactor the code. Refactoring means to increase the code quality without changing its observable behavior. This is an opportunity to increase readability, increase flexibility, reduce duplication, or make the code more accessible for yourself and other developers moving forward.
  6. Step 6: Repeat the process by going back to Step 1. The repeat step means following the steps to add new tests.
  7. Overview: This entire TDD workflow is often explained as the repetition of "Red, Green, Refactor". This encapsulates the idea of writing a single, small failing test, writing only enough code to green the test, and then to refactor, when possible.

Three Laws of Test Driven Development

  • You are not allowed to write any production code unless it is to make a failing unit test pass.
  • You are not allowed to write any more of a unit test than is sufficient to fail; and compilation failures are failures.
  • You are not allowed to write any more production code than is sufficient to pass the one failing unit test.

Getting Started

  1. Fork this repository to make a copy on your own GitHub account.
  2. Make sure that your browser is showing this project in your own repositories list in your own account.
  3. Click the green button on the right that says "Clone or Download".
  4. The clone address should look like git@github.com:your-github-username/intro-to-testing-js.git, where your-github-username is actually your own username on GitHub.
  5. Once you've copied your repo's clone address, it's time to clone the project in one of two ways:
    • If you're using IntelliJ, choose New->Project From Version Control->Git and then paste in the clone address.git clone git@github.com:your-github-username/intro-to-testing-js.git.
    • If you're using command line, then execute the following command line command: git clone git@github.com:your-github-username/intro-to-testing-js.git.
  6. Once cloned to your projects directory, open up the project.
  7. Launch report.html in your browser. You should see a set of green tests for the sayHello function.
  8. Refresh report.html to re-run new code in test.js or code.js. Do this any time the test or the implementation code changes.

Project Structure

  • The report.html file is the test running tool. In this case, the HTML page is loading both the tests.js and code.js files.
  • The tests.js file contains the assertions that provide feedback on the appropriateness of the solutions in code.js.
  • The code.js file contains the implementation code. An "implementation" means the code that is meant to solve a problem, fix a bug, or add a feature.

Exercise #0 - look, guess, test, conclude

  1. Clone this repo to your projects folder following the "Getting Started" directions. Take a moment to orient yourself with the test runner, the existing tests, and the implementation inside of code.js.

  2. Once you're setup and comfortable, go to code.js and change the name of the helloWorld function to hello. Then refresh report.html in your browser.

    • What do you notice about the test results?
    • What are some ways you think we could get the tests to turn green again?
    • Set the function name in code.js back to helloWorld and re-run the tests.
  3. Inside of the helloWorld function in code.js, replace return "Hello, World!" with return "Hello".

    • Run the tests by refreshing report.html in your browser.
    • Which tests fail? Which tests are still green?
    • Set the implementation back to return "Hello, World!"
  4. Inside of the helloWorld function in code.js, change the line return "Hello, World!" to console.log("Hello, World!"). Then refresh report.html.

    • What happens to the tests? Identify which tests stay green and which ones turn red.
    • Why do you think that is?
    • Consider, what is the return value of a console.log? hint, it's always the same
    • Consider, what is the return value of a return?
    • Fix your helloWorld implementation so that it greens all the tests.
  5. Now, let's purposefully put a syntax error into the helloWorld function, to see what happens with the tests.

    • Open up code.js and remove the closing curly brace from the end of the helloWorld function definition.
    • Refresh report.html in your browser.
    • Fix the syntax error and confirm that tests are all green.
  6. Now, go to code.js and replace the function statement for helloWorld with a function experession. Do all the tests stay green or not? Why or why not? Double check your syntax. These are interchangeable because functions are first class citizens in the JS language.

// function statement syntax
function helloWorld() {
    return "Hello, World!";
}
// function expression syntax (assigning an anonymous function to a variable)
const helloWorld = function() {
    return "Hello, World!";
}

Before moving on, ensure that all tests are green.

Let's Test Drive a sayHello function

  • We'll build up our solution incrementally, in a Test-Driven manner.
  • Be careful not to refactor too early. Only refactor once we have sufficient tests.
  • Ultimately, sayHello should say "Hello" to any string we pass to it.
  • We'll handle some edge cases once we've solved the heart of the matter.

Exercise #1 Take your first "Test Drive" by writing your first test!

Our next exercise is to follow the TDD workflow to develop incremental tests and solutions for testing a sayHello() function that takes in a name as an argument and returns a string that says hello to that name.

  • Step 1: Let's write the smallest test possible. Open up tests.js. Add a describe, an it, and an expect to assert that sayHello is a defined function. Use your tests for helloWorld as a guide.
  • Step 2: Run all the tests. At this point, we're expecting and hoping for a single, red failing test that we just now authored.
  • Step 3: Now, let's go to code.js and create an empty function definition for sayHello.
  • Step 4: Run all the tests. We're expecting all tests, including the new test for sayHello to be green.
  • Step 5: Given that this is our first (tiny) test and our first implementation, there is not yet the opportunity to refactor.
  • Step 6: The last TDD step is to "repeat" the process of adding another test. What we're going to do is add our work to git and then move to Exercise #2, which is to add the second test.

Before proceeding, add your work to GitHub!

  • Open your terminal and navigate to the local directory where you cloned this project.
  • First, git status. Notice which files are tracked by git and which files have changes.
  • Second, type git add -A to tell git that you want to get all the changed files staged for commit.
  • Now, type git status. You should see file names in green. This means that the files are ready for commit.
  • Next, type git commit -m "add the first test and solution for intro-to-testing"
  • Type git status, again, to make sure that all files are added and committed.
  • Finally, push your work by running git push. Pushing uploads your new commits to your remote repository, meaning your own fork on GitHub.

Exercise #2 Ensure our function returns the right data type.

  • New tests will each have their own expect, it, the describe
  • Step 1: The smallest possible test, now that the function exists, is to ensure that calling the function gives us a string. Inside of tests.js, add an assertion to sayHello that it "should return a string when called.". The test should look similar to expect(typeof sayHello()).toBe("string")
  • Step 2: Run all tests to make sure that the new test starts red.
  • Step 3: Have your sayHello function return a string. The simplest code and smallest change possible is to return an empty string return "".
  • Step 4: Now, run all the tests to ensure that the previously red test is now turned green by our impelementation.
  • Step 5: There's nothing to refactor.
  • Step 6: Repeat (Repeat the process by moving to build the next, small test)
  • Always: Add, commit, and push your work to GitHub.

Exercise #3 - Add a test to confirm actual vs. expected output.

  • Step 1: How that the function exists and returns the right data type, let's add our first realistic assertion. In tests.js, assert that sayHello("Jane") returns "Hello, Jane!". Our first test should be super simple and super small.
  • Step 2: Run all tests and make sure that this newly added test is red.
  • Step 3: If the test wants us to return "Hello, Jane!" then literally write return "Hello, Jane!"; because that's the simplest way to green a test looking for "Hello, Jane!".
  • Step 4: Run all tests. They should all be green at this point.
  • Step 5: It's too soon to refactor.
  • Step 6: Repeat step means to add another test, so let's move to the next exercise.

Exercise #4 Add another small, simple test

  • Step 1: In tests.js, assert that sayHello("Alex") returns "Hello, Alex!". Our first test should be super simple and super small. This means that our next test should look like expect(sayHello("Alex")).toBe("Hello, Alex!").
  • Step 2: Run all tests and make sure that this newly added test is red.
  • Step 3: It's challenging not to jump to the "correct" answer already, but let's stay close to the TDD method. Write just enough code to green the test. This means making sure that the sayHello function definition inside of code.js takes an an input argument. If input === "Alex", then we return "Hello, Alex!" else return "Hello, Jane!". Don't get too fancy. A cornerstone of TDD is refactoring only once you have a handful of green tests, not just one or two with new inputs.
  • Step 4: Run all tests, expecting that all are now green. Does each test turn green? If so, then we can proceed. We can't refactor unless we have greened a test, even with a hard-coded implementation.
  • Step 5: If you feel the urge to refactor already, hang on! Let's add one more test!
  • Step 6: Repeat the TDD cycle, so let's add another test in the next exercise.

Exercise #5 One more test before refactoring...

  • Step 1: Add another (tiny) assertion! In tests.js, assert that sayHello("Pat") returns "Hello, Pat!". Since our tests should be super simple, the assertion should be expect(sayHello("Pat")).toBe("Hello, Pat!")
  • Step 2: Run all tests and make sure that this newly added test is red and failing.
  • Step 3: Again, you may feel the urge to jump to the "correct" answer already. Let's stay on target. Write just enough code to green the test. For this case, just enough code means adding another conditional such that if input === "Pat", then the function should have return "Hello, Pat!".
  • Step 4: Run all tests. Does each test turn green? If so, then we can proceed.
  • Step 5: Refactor! It's definitely refactoring time!

When to Refactor

  • How do we know that it's time to refactor? The answer: Once we have a handful of green tests, but the logic feels hard-coded, funky, or incomplete, then it's probably refactoring time.
  • Notice that when the input is "Jane", "Pat", or "Alex", the tests green. But what if we sent in any other name as the argument?
  • When every new test means that we're adding another if or else if to the code, is there a better way of doing things?
  • Refactoring is only possible once we have a handful of passing, green tests. These give us safety and guidance.
  • This may feel slow, but each new test cycle should only take 2-3 minutes, if not shorter!
  • Since our goal is to have a sayHello function that says hello to any input string, then adding a new conditional for each input is not scalable.
  • In the TDD approach, refactoring is only possible if you have enough tests and enough code that all the tests are green. In this way, your tests provide a target for the refactor. If your refactoring fails tests that

Exercise #6 Implement the refactor!

  • Inside sayHello in code.js, what's a change you can identify that will improve the overall functioning of this function?
  • Can you get the implmentation of sayHello down to a function with only one line of code inside?
  • If we have return "Hello, " + input + "!";, does this work for all names?
  • Does this bring up any other issues with other inputs?

Exercise #7 Add, commit, and push your work to GitHub.

  • "If your code ain't checked-in to source control, then it doesn't exist."
  • In your terminal, ensure that the pwd command shows that you're in the directory for this project.
  • First, git status. Notice which files are tracked by git and which files have changes.
  • Second, type git add -A to tell git that you want to get all the changed files staged for commit.
  • Now, type git status. You should see file names in green. This means that the files are ready for commit.
  • Next, type git commit -m "add tests and ability to say 'hello' to any input."
  • Type git status, again, to make sure that all files are added and committed.
  • Finally, push your work with git push.

Exercise #8 "Repeat" step (where we look for additional tests to add)

  • First, in tests.js, add expect(sayHello()).toBe("Hello, World!"). Then refresh report.html to see the failing test.
  • Follow that by adding just enough code inside of the sayHello function code.js to green that latest test. Recommend checking if the input variable's value is undefined.
  • Next, add expect(sayHello(true)).toBe("Hello, World!") to the tests.js file. Refresh to see the failing red test.
  • Add just enough code to code.js to green that latest test. if (input === true) then return "Hello, World!"
  • Now, add expect(sayHello(false)).toBe("Hello, World!") to the <table></table>ests.js file. Refresh to see the failing test.
  • Add just enough code to code.js to green this test.
  • Once all the tests are green, identify refactor opportunities and refactor your solution.
  • Are there any other edge cases you want to write a test for? You have a green light to add more of your own tests to "drive" the implementation.
  • Some edge cases to consider. What if:
    • the input is null?
    • the input is an empty string like ""?
    • the input is a number like 2.3?
    • the input is a number inside a string like "5"?
    • the input is another data type like an array, object, or function?

Exercise #9 Add, commit, and push your work to GitHub (make this a habit)

  • "If your code ain't checked-in to source control, then it doesn't exist."
  • In your terminal, ensure that the pwd command shows that you're in the directory for this project.
  • First, git status. Notice which files are tracked by git and which files have changes.
  • Second, type git add -A to tell git that you want to get all the changed files staged for commit.
  • Now, type git status. You should see file names in green. This means that the files are ready for commit.
  • Next, type git commit -m "unit tests for edge cases."
  • Type git status, again, to make sure that all files are added and committed.
  • Finally, push your work with git push.

Exercise #10 Let's Test-Drive an isFive function!

  • Inside of tests.js, write a describe block for our new isFive function.
  • As your first, failing test, write an it and an expect asserting that a function named isFive exists.
  • Run the tests by refreshing report.html to show the red, failing test.
  • Write just enough code inside of code.js to define an empty function for isFive.
  • Now, refresh report.html to ensure that all tests are green.
  • What other tests and implementation cycles should you do for isFive?
    • Ensure that isFive returns a boolean no matter what the input
    • Ensure that isFive returns true when passed 5
    • What about if we pass in the string "5"? Do you want isFive to return true for that?
    • If so, write the test, ensure that the test is failing, and then write the implementation
  • Commit your work to git and push to GitHub before moving forward.

Exercise #11 TDD process for testing and creating an isEven function

  • Start with the smallest tests first. Assert that the function is defined.
  • Write just enough code to green the test
  • Build up functionality one small piece at a time.
  • Write each assertion, confirm the test fails, write only enough code to green that specific test, refactor, then repeat.
    • Remember to add and then "green" one test at a time. That's part of the fundamental approach of TDD.
    • Assert that isEven:
      • returns a boolean no matter the input
      • returns true when executed with isEven(2)
      • returns true when executed with isEven(-4)
      • returns false when executed with isEven(3)
      • returns false when called with isEven("banana")
      • returns true when called with isEven("8")
      • returns false when called with isEven(infinity)
      • return false when called with a boolean input like isEven(true) or isEven(false)
      • returns false when calles without an argument like isEven()
  • Refactor when and where you can. Be careful not to refactor before you have a handful of green tests.
  • Repeat until the tests are robust and the function works as intended.
  • Commit your work to git and push to GitHub before moving forward.

Exercise #12 Test Drive an isVowel function

  • Start with the smallest tests first.
  • Write just enough code to green the test
  • Build up functionality one small piece at a time.
  • Commit your work to git at each step.
  • Write each assertion, confirm the test fails, write only enough code to green that specific test, refactor, then repeat.
    • Remember to add and then "green" one test at a time. That's part of the fundamental approach of TDD.
    • Assert that:
      • isVowel always returns a boolean
      • isVowel("a") returns true
      • isVowel("A") returns true
      • isVowel("y") returns false
      • isVowel(4) returns false
      • isVowel(true) or isVowel(false) both return false
      • isVowel("banana") returns false
      • isVowel() returns false
  • Refactor when appropriate and possible.
  • Repeat until the tests are robust and the function works as intended.
  • Commit your work to git and push to GitHub before moving forward.

Exercise #13 Test Drive an add function

  • The add function should sum two numbers, as long as each input is a number or a string containing a number.
  • Write each assertion, confirm the test fails, write only enough code to green that specific test, refactor, then repeat (move onto the next test.)
  • Assert that add:
    • add(2, 3) returns 5
    • add(-3, -9) returns -12
    • add("5", 6) returns 11
    • add("-4", "10") returns 6
    • add("banana", "split") returns NaN
    • add(2, "apples") returns NaN
    • add() returns NaN
  • Start with the smallest tests first.
  • Write just enough code to green the test
  • Build up functionality one small piece at a time.
  • If any input is not a number, return NaN
  • Refactor, if possible
  • Repeat until the tests are robust and the function works as intented.
  • Commit your work to git and push to GitHub.

Jasmine Documentation

More resources

You can’t perform that action at this time.