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Testing legacy: Hard-wired dependencies (part 1)

When pairing with some developers, I've noticed that one of the reasons they are not unit testing existing code is because, quite often, they don't know how to overcome certain problems. The most common one is related to hard-wired dependencies - Singletons and static calls....


Working with legacy code

Context Large organisations' systems may have from tens of thousands to a few million lines of code and a good part of those lines is legacy code. By legacy code I mean code without tests. Many of these systems started being written many years ago,...


A change in attitude - Legacy code

Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference. Winston Churchill Not long ago, I gave a talk about Software Craftsmanship where I asked who liked to work on greenfield projects. Almost everyone raised their hands. Then I asked who liked to work with...


Re-drawing my own map: A new milestone

For every step you take towards mastery, your destination moves two steps further away. Embrace mastery as a lifelong endeavour. Learn to love the journey. George Leonard: Mastery: The Keys to Success and Long-Term Fulfillment It is with a mixture of sadness and excitement that...


Open-source developers deserve respect

I was recently reading Gojko Adzic's blog post called How is it even possible for code to be this bad? I must admit that I was very sad to see tremendous lack of respect towards the Hudson/Jenkins community and towards open source software developers in...


Defining and Prioritising a Backlog

What is the best way to review a backlog? How do you ensure that it is "complete"? How do you ensure that the prioritisation reflects the business vision and goals? When first faced with a backlog, you are often overwhelmed by the long list of...


Naming your Unit Tests

Often I see Unit Tests with the test methods that have the same name as the method under test prefixed with the word "test" e.g. testSubmitApplication. This provides no extra information on which "flow" of the mothod is being tested. Other test method names provide...


Approach to Performance Tuning

Performance issues in a application manifest as bottlenecks in one or more of the following 4 layers: Application: Application is not designed, developed or configured properly. Platform: The platform that the application runs under (e.g. App Servers, Databases etc.) is not setup and configure. System:...


The relationship between Product Owner, Business Analyst and Tester

In an Agile/Scrum team the Product Owner manages the Product Backlog, a Business Analyst may help further elaborate the backlog. Acceptance Criteria is "one of the" or the output of that elaboration. A Tester may futher define the Acceptance Criteria and write test scripts to...


JVM Profiling: Thread Dumps

Thread dumps are possilby the most useful tool in diagnosing concurrancy related issues. You can get a thread dump at any time by sending a break signal to the JVM. In Windows it's CTRL-Break and in Unix/Linux it's kill -3 <pid> The possible issues to...


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