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Test Confessions: What Eclipsers Think and Do About Testing

Michaela Greiler, Arie Van Deursen

Making Community · Extended
Tuesday, 17:00, 40 minutes | Ballroom D


As an Eclipser, testing matters to you. But when and why do you adopt a given testing approach? How are you going to test your GUI? Do you test different versions? How do you test the integration of multiple plugins into products?

To answer such questions, we conducted an in-depth study on the testing culture within the Eclipse community, following the Grounded Theory approach widely used in the social sciences. In addition to a thorough literature study, we interviewed 20 professionals developing or testing well-known Eclipse plugins or Rich Client Platform applications.

The findings of our study uncover what Eclipsers think and what they do when it comes to testing, the challenges they face, and how they address them. The findings include (often opposing) views on test automation, versioning, GUI testing, bug fixing, tooling, reviewing, and the role of the Eclipse community in quality assurance.

This talk not only aims at presenting our findings, but also at fostering an open dialogue within the Eclipse community on its testing culture. We will present approximately 20 minutes of material, which we mix with explicit questions, discussions, and voting on the individual findings, resulting into a total of 40 minutes for a lively extended talk.

The blog to the study:

Michaela Greiler is doing her PhD in the Software Engineering Research Group at the Delft University of Technology. Her research focuses on developing efficient testing methodologies for plug-in based systems, in particular for Eclipse.
She holds a Master's degree in Computer Science, has presented her work at various international conferences and workshops, and she has won a best paper award for her presentation on Understanding Plugin Test Suites at WCRE 2010.

Arie van Deursen is a professor in software engineering at Delft University of Technology (NL). His research interests include software testing, refactoring, collaborative development, and Ajax. He has published over 100 peer reviewed papers on these topics in international journals and conference proceedings. He is head of the TU Delft Software Engineering Research Group, and co-founder of two companies, and
He is a frequent presenter at international conferences, and was keynote speaker at ACM SoftVis 2010, SofSem 2010, CHOOSE Forum 2009, and IEEE VisSoft/WSE 2009.


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