Perl Testing: A Developer's Notebook
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Released: July 2005
Pages: 202

Is there any sexier topic in software development than software testing? That is, besides game programming, 3D graphics, audio, high-performance clustering, cool websites, et cetera? Okay, so software testing is low on the list. And that's unfortunate, because good software testing can increase your productivity, improve your designs, raise your quality, ease your maintenance burdens, and help to satisfy your customers, coworkers, and managers.

Perl has a strong history of automated tests. A very early release of Perl 1.0 included a comprehensive test suite, and it's only improved from there. Learning how Perl's test tools work and how to put them together to solve all sorts of previously intractable problems can make you a better programmer in general. Besides, it's easy to use the Perl tools described to handle all sorts of testing problems that you may encounter, even in other languages.

Like all titles in O'Reilly's Developer's Notebook series, this "all lab, no lecture" book skips the boring prose and focuses instead on a series of exercises that speak to you instead of at you.

Perl Testing: A Developer's Notebook will help you dive right in and:

  • Write basic Perl tests with ease and interpret the results
  • Apply special techniques and modules to improve your tests
  • Bundle test suites along with projects
  • Test databases and their data
  • Test websites and web projects
  • Use the "Test Anything Protocol" which tests projects written in languages other than Perl

With today's increased workloads and short development cycles, unit tests are more vital to building robust, high-quality software than ever before. Once mastered, these lessons will help you ensure low-level code correctness, reduce software development cycle time, and ease maintenance burdens.

You don't have to be a die-hard free and open source software developer who lives, breathes, and dreams Perl to use this book. You just have to want to do your job a little bit better.

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oreillyPerl Testing: A Developer's Notebook

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This book is a game changer

By Noah QA

from Santa Barbara

Verified Reviewer


  • Accurate
  • Helpful examples
  • Well-written


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    Comments about oreilly Perl Testing: A Developer's Notebook:

    After being bitten by a by a small bug that warranted a lengthy investigation and remediation, I was finally able to convince management to invest the time in developing a testing framework for our code. After reading this book (and often referring back to it) I was able to develop an automated testing suite with both functional and unit tests.
    I knew this book would be great when I noticed that it was written by Chromatic, after all, he wrote all the best articles on Perl testing!
    This book introduces the philosophies of testing in parallel to guiding the reader through with the particularities of the Perl language. It does a great job of including 'real world scenarios' that were easily modified to test our code. However, there are little tidbits sprinkled throughout the book that one would want to refer back to but could not find because they did not warrant a chapter or even a section title. This book is best read with a notepad or highlighter handy. Don't let the size of the book fool you, it may be small but it contained almost everything that I needed to know to get started on a very successful test suite.

    (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)


    Testing should be fun

    By Kiffin Gish

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly Perl Testing: A Developer's Notebook:

    Excellent overview and introduction to the art of testing Perl programs. This modestly-sized book covers a wide range of types of testing from the very simple Perl script to the more advanced web application. It's not only about writing tests but managing them as well and then making sure that your code can be distributed in a useful manner. I especially found the chapter about testing untestable code very insightful, where the use of mocking modules and mocking objects is essential. Have you ever needed to override live code by hacking deeply into their packages? Well, this book will help you out with this delicate matter and make you more confident with testing, testing and testing. Most people have an aversion to testing, but here you can get quickly up to speed and even enjoy the fine are of testing. There are many references to other CPAN modules which is useful to know about. Of course, any book authored by chromatic has to be worth the read.

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