As Agile software application development has become more popular in recent times we have (by no coincidence) logically seen the rise of extended code analysis tools in the Agile space.
The concept is simple. With a deeper level of granularity into extended code analysis, the pursuit of better debugging is made easier -- even in rapidly shifting Agile development scenarios.
NOTE: TechTarget's own definition of Agile software (application) development (ASD) states that: This is a methodology for the creative process that anticipates the need for flexibility and applies a level of pragmatism into the delivery of the finished product. Agile software development focuses on keeping code simple, testing often, and delivering functional bits of the application as soon as they're ready. The goal of ASD is to build upon small client-approved parts as the project progresses, as opposed to delivering one large application at the end of the project.
Software testing specialist Typemock says that the key to this "deeper level of granularity" is isolated unit tests. The company highlights findings which estimate that although 70% of Agile developers say that they unit test, much less of them really write automated, isolated unit tests.
Since isolation requires "mocking", developers are not testing their software as thoroughly as they might, says Typemock product manager Gil Zilberfeld.
NOTE: Mock objects mimic the behaviour of real objects. In a unit test, mock objects can simulate the behaviour of complex, real (non-mock) objects. Mock objects are useful when a real object, such as dependencies, is impractical or impossible to incorporate into a unit test.
"When your unit tests use mocks, they run faster. Instead of expensive calls to the database or the cloud, you can shorten tests to milliseconds. A full test suite can run in seconds instead of hours, giving you immediate feedback on your code," said Zilberfeld.
According to Typemock, developers who use its methodologies and technologies will find that when a unit test fails, the resulting scenario is easier to handle.
"They don't need to start up the entire application, set a breakpoint, miss it, return to it, shut it down, fix it, and repeat until it's really fixed -- as unit tests (typically) test very small pieces of code, where the rest is mocked," said the company, in a press statement.