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The ACCU passes on review copies of computer books to its members for them to review. The result is a large, high quality collection of book reviews by programmers, for programmers. Currently there are 1918 reviews in the database and more every month.
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Title:
Fit for Developing Software
Author:
Rick Mugridge and Ward Cunningham
ISBN:
0321269349
Publisher:
Prentice Hall
Pages:
Price:
Reviewer:
Anthony Williams
Subject:
testing
Appeared in:
18-5

As the subtitle of this book says, Fit is the Framework for Integrated Tests, which was originally written by Ward. This is a testing framework that allows tests to be written in the form of Excel spreadsheets or HTML tables, which makes it easy for non-programmers to write tests. This book is divided into several parts. Parts 1 and 2 give an in-depth overview of how to use Fit effectively, and how it enables non-programmers to specify the tests, whereas parts 3-5 provide details that programmers will need for how to set up their code to be run from Fit.

Though I have been aware of Fit for a long time, I have never entirely grasped how to use it; reading this book gave me a strong urge to give it a go. It is very clear, with plenty of examples. I thought the sections on good/bad test structure, and how to restructure your tests to be clearer and easy to maintain were especially valuable - though they are obviously focused on Fit, many of the suggestions are applicable to testing through any framework.

Fit was developed as a Java framework, and so all the programming examples are in Java. However, as stated in the appendix, there are ports for many languages including C#, Python and C++. The way of structuring the fixtures that link the Fit tests to the code under test varies with each language, but the overall principles still apply.

The book didn't quite succeed in convincing me to spend time working with Fit or Fitnesse to try and integrate it with any of my existing projects, but I still think it's worth a look, and will try and use it on my next greenfield project.