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20 April 2008 QTN HAS MOVED! Check Out e-Valid.blogspot.com
We are switching all WQN articles to the e-Valid.blogspot.com, which has been in development for several months now. Happy Blogging!
15 April 2008 eValid Operation with Morfik-Developed AJAX Apps Confirmed
The Morfik WebOS AppsBuilder is a powerful system that creates an AJAX application able to run on any JavaScript browser using libraries and support facilities within the product. Morfik claims that WebOS AppsBuilder applications are Web 2.0 ready right out of the box.

As an illustration of how well eValid handles Morfik app operations, here is an example script description, Testing The Morfik Development Environment. The writeup includes the complete eValid scripts for the Morfik home page -- an application that is developed entirely with their OWN AppsBuilder system. An important feature of this example is that it includes specific AJAX synchronization logic that uses built-in eValid features.

14 April 2008 1st International Workshop on Testing Database Systems: 13 June 2008, Vancouver, Canada
How do you really test databases? Here's a workshop at which the goal is to devise new techniques to reduce the time and cost to test database products, and that clearly has an impact on "things web." Full details at DBTest 2008.
4 April 2008 eValid V7 Support Ending; V8 Upgrade Urged
As eValid users are aware, support for prior versions of eValid generally ends a few months after the new version is introduced. We give users plenty of notice that support is going to end.

When any technical support questions arise we always answer them relative to the latest eValid release. Doing this helps make sure we give top-notch support! It makes sure we are "all on the same page"!

3 April 2008 3rd Workshop on Automation of Software Test (AST'08): 11 May 2008, Leipzi, Germany
The AST2008 workshop, also part of the International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE'08) focuses on the automation aspects of software testing, from a theoretical and academic point of view.
2 April 2008 6th Workshop on Software Quality (ICSE 2008): 10-18 May 2008, Leipzig, Germany
Sixth in a continuing series, of teneral interest to Software Quality people worldwide. Part of the International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE'08) Complete details on the workshop: WoSQ2008.
28 March 2008 Technical Resources
Here are some useful technical resources for you:
  • Take a few minutes to watch some of our Annotated/Animated Movies. You'll find seven that show how eValid works from the GUI level, and three that deal with specific testing situations.
  • If you run into a tricky problem testing a website, you might consider checking out the 40+ entries in our Worked Solutions Resource. You'll find a wide range of already-worked examples showing how eValid solves typical testing situations.
  • For general eValid usage you may wish to check into the set of our "top 99" Power User Tips & Tricks. They cover everything from simple functional testing to detailed LoadTest experiment development.
21 March 2008 eValid Operation with GWT "Kitchen Sink" Confirmed
The Google Web Toolkit (GWT) is a popular method for creating strong user-interactive AJAX applications with embedded JavaScript that is actually created from Java sources. The end-user tests of these AJAX applications has to be "in the browser" and this is where eValid comes into play.

As an illustration of how well eValid handles GWT operation, here is our complete Testing AJAX Applications -- GWT Kitchen Sink Example. The writeup includes the complete eValid scripts for three different example applications.

14 March 2008 Automated Technology for Verification and Analysis: 20-23 October, Seoul, South Korea
The ATVA2008, is the sixth in this series of thes workshops, this time held in South Korea, and tends to focus on higher-level aspects of automation.
13 March 2008 eValid Operation with IE8 Beta Confirmed
Microsoft has released a "Beta 1" of the new IE8 browser and eValid users will be pleased to know that eValid technology works perfectly well with the IE8 browser installed.
12 March 2008 eValid Partnership Offer
If you are a contractor/consultant, or if you are involved in a web application development firm, we want to hear from you! There are many ways we can cooperate in delivering eValid's unique capabilities. Here is an outline of some of the Partner Opportunities. Please contact us ASAP if you're interested!
10 March 2008 ICWE 2008 Conference: 14-18 July 2008, Yorktown Heights, New York
The ICWE 2008 Web Engineering is going to be of general interest to workers in the web area, but it might be of interested to testers, too!
6 March 2008 PerformanceTest Success Story
Here's a summary of a PerformanceTest Project that we recently completed.

The main feature of this project was use of the eValid test engine to analyze the capacity of an industry leader's server complex, to provide confidence just prior to a big promotional effort.

To do this we created a set of eValid scripts that closely approximated "from the field" data about how the web application was used. Then we ran a series of tests to help pinpoint performance shortcomings, so that the web hosting team could make critical changes before the release date. This prevented a PR nightmare and serious loss of income for the client.

This writeup is one of a series of eValid Success Stories.

5 March 2008 V8 Complete Documentation Available
The recently released eValid V8 technical documentation is now available for use by eValid users in PDF format. The new PDF User Manual runs to over 890 pages (about 21 MBytes). If you're an eValid user and want to have your own copy, please let us know using the eValid Question page, and we'll email you instructions for the download.
4 March 2008 4th Workshop on Advances in Model Based Testing: 9-11 April 2008
The A-MOST 2008 sub-conference looks into the sub-area of model-based testing, as part of the larger Lillehammer, Norway event.
3 March 2008 First International Conference on Software Testing, Verification and Validation: 9-11 April 2008, Lillehammer, Norway
ICST 2008 is a new conference aimed at the intersection of academic and industrial development.
28 February 2008 New Index Motion Commands Available
We've added two commands to the powerful DOM Element Manipulation/Motion command set:
  • IndexValidateObjProperty -- checks whether the current sourceIndex has a particular value. This assumes you've already used an IndexFind command to locate the element you're looking for, and now you want to confirm that the specified property of that element has a particular value.

  • IndexSaveObjProperty -- saves the value of the current sourceIndex in a file for later comparison/validation. Similar to the above, you can print out the current value of the selected element's named property for separate confirmation/validation.

This capability effectively extends eValid DOM manipulation to include validating page elements entirely independent of page structure. Tests constructed with this approach are nearly immune to dynamic page changes!

17 February 2007 Web Testing Workshop (July 2008)
This workshop may be of interest to our readers because it focuses now (in a change from the past) on EVERY aspect of web application testing and validation: Workshop on Testing, Analysis and Verification of Web Software. This highly specialized workshop is being held in conjunction with ISSTA 2008, also a well known and highly reputed conference of many years running.
01 February 2008 Desktop Safe, Dynamic Page Adaptive, Playback Method
If you have a website where the pages are dynamic -- so that the indexes of where things are on the page change around from day to day -- you may have a situation that is beyond the ability of the eValid Adaptive Playback feature to compensate. For example, if you had the following command in your script:
FollowLink 0 503 "" "http://www.website.com/servlet/copy_asset?id=3D33221875" ""
this could be replaced with the the 2-command sequence:
IndexElementFind 0 DOWN "nameProp" "uniqueName" ""
IndexFollowLink 0 ""
Alternatively, you could also use this 2-command sequence:
IndexElementFind 0 DOWN "nameProp" "uniqueName" ""
IndexElementClick 0 ""

You can use the eValid PageMap feature to identify the appropriate values for nameProp and uniqueName.

31 January 2008 eValid V8 Released
There's a brand new version of eValid out: eValid V8. Some of the main features of the new release are:
  • Addition of over a dozen new features (including the EPI, described below).
  • Advanced support for AJAX application playback synchronization.
  • Revised and updated site analysis report look and feel.
  • Special support for "spoofing" any kind of browser, and special commands to support server load balancing experiments.
  • Options to help customize playback event logs for monitoring, and new interfaces to popular monitoring environments.
  • New product bundles and new pricing structures.
Here's a quick summary of the New Features you'll find in eValid V8.
15 January 2008 EPI Description Released
A major part of the new eValid V8 release is the addition of a fully accessible eValid Programmatic Interface (EPI). This new interface brings eValid as a test engine within the scope of popular programming languages, via a COM-based DLL that exposes key features of the eValid test engine. Here's a summary of the main EPI Features.
20 December 2007 eVlite Benchmarks Updated
There are new benchmark data available for eValid's eVlite Limited Fidelity Playback feature. At the high end of capacity, our new benchmarks show that, using a fairly fast PC that is running up to 20 copies of eVlite at one time, you can simulate the activity of 20,000 user playbacks simultaneously.

Remember, eVlite activity is "non-coherent" in the sense that there is no session memory or context involved. eVlite playbacks are similar to those normally available when using a loading engine based on HTTP protocol actvity. In the eValid context, eVlite work is used to create a background of high activity while measuring the performance of realistic, in the foreground, context sensitive test sessions.

07 December 2007 URL Trace Generation Feature
The new URL Trace Creation feature is intended to make it possible to run tests, for comparison purposes, in eValid that mimic some types of less-sophisticated browser traffic generators such as those based in HTTP sequences.

In operation the new URL Trace Creation feature generates a derived script at playback time that contains the specific sequence of GetURL commands to account for every URL that the eValid browser downloaded during the script playback. The resulting derived eValid script can be used in different ways: for server load timing experiments, to create non-browser server activity, and for performance comparison purposes.

Total URL-only playback time typically exceeds that of eValid browser based playback because the browser activity is multi-threaded, whereas the sequence of GetURL commands executes serially (single thread, no parallelism).

03 December 2007 eValid Academics SJSU Course on Software Test Automation Features evalid
Students in Prof. Jerry Gao's course on Software Test Automation (CMPE 296X) scheduled for the Spring 2008 will have access to eValid as part of the regular coursework.

The course focuses on modern methods of test automation with emphasis on GUI automation solutions. Students will have access to eValid licenses for use in testing web browser enabled applications.

18 November 2007 GWT Conference: 3-6 December, San Francisco
Addison-Wesley and Prentice Hall are sponsoring on a conference dedicated to GWT: Voices That Matter: Google Web Toolkit has major support from Google staffers (e.g. Bruce Johnson, Joel Webber, Josh Bloch) who are responsible for the GTW system for creating Rich Internet Applications (RIAs) efficiently.

What is most important about this conference is that it focuses a great deal of attention to the use of Java + GWT as a powerful and efficient way to enhance the client-side user experience. It's the productivity that you gain this way that's most significant!

20 October 2007 New Monitoring Support Commands Introduced
The most recent eValid release includes two new commands aimed at making the job of timing complete sessions easier and more logical:

  • The TimeStamp command lets you create a separate file that records the exact time -- in elapsed playback seconds -- for various checkpoints in your script.

  • The SaveReport command creates a separate file, with messages under user control, depending on where the commands are found in the playback script.

The main advantage of these commands is that you can run a multi-step monitoring playback, but break up the time phases within the playback session into meaningful sections, e.g. getting ready, loggin on, selecting something, moving to checkout, choosing the shipping, etc.

15 October 2007 New eVlite Benchmarks Completed
There are new benchmark data available for eValid's eVlite Limited Fidelity Playback feature.

At the high end of capacity, our new benchmarks show that, using a fairly fast PC that is running up to 20 copies of eVlite at one time, you can simulate the activity of 20,000 user playbacks simultaneously.

Remember, this activity is "non-coherent" in the sense that there is no session memory or context involved. eVlite playbacks are similar to those normally available when using a loading engine based on HTTP protocol actvity. In the eValid context, eVlite work is used to create a background of high activity while measuring the performance of realistic, in the foreground, context sensitive test sessions.

10 October 2007 Index Commands Augmented
Two new commands, IndexSubmitClick and IndexInputValue, have been added to the group of commands that allow for manipulation of DOM index values.

These commands provide the eValid user with the ability to identify an object on the face of a page and to either click on it or feed it a value -- independent of where the object is on the page.

05 October 2007 STAN, PROF, PAGEMAP Feature Normalization
It's housekeeping time! Over the last several years quite a few new eValid commands have been introduced, but in some cases we have not been as consistent as we should have been. Some commands' siblings -- with nearly identical functionality -- require different levels of playback feature key. It was time to normalize, and we have done that.

Some commands that were PROF level now are STAN, and some that were PROF now require PAGEMAP. If you are advised, after you update to the latest eValid version, that some commands now require a higher level feature key that you have, let us know and we will make the appropriate modifications to your license file.

01 October 2007 Validation of Document URL Command Extended
The new Document URL Validation Extension feature proivdes a method for checking page URLs in more detail than before. In addition to validating the complete URL (the original capability) you now can validate the server name, the protocol type, or even a partial URL.

This capability will be important if you are using eValid playbacks to do load-balancing experiments, or to analyze a website that is served by several different machines.

30 September 2007 New URL Trace Command
The new URL Trace Creation feature is intended to make it possible to run tests, for comparison purposes, in eValid that mimic some types of less-sophisticated browser traffic generators such as those based in HTTP/S sequences.

In operation the new URL Trace Creation feature generates a derived script at playback time that contains the specific sequence of GetURL commands to account for every URL that the eValid browser downloaded during the script playback. The resulting derived script can be used for server load timing experiments, can be used in various utilities to create non-browser server activity, and for performance comparison purposes.

Total URL-only playback time typically exceeds that of eValid browser based playback because the browser activity is multi-threaded, whereas the sequence of GetURL commands executes serially (single thread, no parallelism).

21 September 2007 New Site Analysis Report Structure
We have revised the organization and presentation of the site analysis reports -- nearly twenty of them -- to make them easier to use and easier to manipulate. Here is the description of the new Site Analysis Report Selection page.

eValid site analysis users will also appreciate a rework of the material that describes the setup of the eValid spidering process by using the eValid Site Analysis Settings page.

During the spidering process, eValid applies "filters" to each page that is downloaded, and these are set up as described in the eValid Filters Setup page.

05 September 2007 Google Search and Visible Text Result Confirmation
There was a presentation at the the GTAC conference aimed at finding ways to confirm correct and well-performing operation of multiple Google search engine top pages from a variety of countries. This example was prompted by that presentation.

The test requirement is to confirm, in a very simple manner if possible, whether a standard search page (with standard namings of elements), used in a variety of countries, works acceptably well. And, maybe along the way, figure out how long a chosen search actually takes.

The eValid solution uses the built in "motion commands" so that the resulting script that does the work parametrically is very short and is 100% desktop safe.

Full details are found at Google Search and Visible Text Confirmation. You'll see that we were able to run 15 instances of the script -- i.e. for 15 different Google home pages -- in just under 40 seconds. Comments on how to further simplify this are welcome!

17 August 2007 Rich Internet Application Monitoring Support
Complex web-based applications, increasingly implemented with any of the many available technologies for "rich internet applications (RIA)" interaction, are often business-critical applications: You REALLY want to know they are working well!

eValid functional test playbacks, done on a regular basis, with the correct error flag processing options, are an ideal way to monitor RIAs. What's even better, you can have 100% confidence that you can get reliable playbacks -- we have a 100% Guarantee that you can get reliable playback.

eValid supports monitoring mode operations in a variety of ways:

  • Do-It-Yourself Monitoring
    You can run eValid playbacks on your network locally, using eValid's built in flag processing and email alert capabilities to advise you of problems.

    eValid playback scripts can confirm performance thresholds, validate content at many levels of detail, time page downloads, and report with email and built-in charting. All you need are some copies of the eValid Application Monitoring Bundle.

  • Agent-Based Monitoring System Reporting
    eValid scripts can do the actual RIA tests, and export the results to your local network monitoring environment.

    Nagios is one of the most popular of the network monitoring systems, and we have Nagios support available off the shelf. Plus, we have integrated eValid with a variety of other network management/monitoring solutions.

  • Hosted Monitoring
    We can run your RIA tests -- scripts that you have developed or scripts that we create based on your specification -- in our own network. You get email alerts and notifications, and you have access to the long-term history with your own password-protected account. Here is our Monitoring Services Summary.
Let us know how we can help you get high quality RIA monitoring going for you -- so you can have confidence in your web application's public facing performance and behavior.
1 August 2007 Google Test Automation Conference
Google's leadership in the search engine community makes it clear that they are "doing something right". And this extends to the technology area as well.

The upcoming Google Test Automation Conference (GTAC), 23-24 August 2007 in New York is their second foray into the software testing technology area. The link gives the speakers and their topics. GTAC's an invitation only event, but Google promises that videos of all of the presentations will be made public after the conference is over.

And, if you are concerned about test automation technology you may want to keep an eye on Google's Testing Blog.

19 July 2007 A Newsgroup Question about eValid, Watir, and Selenium
Recently one of the newsgroups that we monitor regularly posted the following question:
I can't understand why anyone would buy a web-based test-tool when there are solid open-source alternatives, like Watir and Selenium. How would you differentiate your closed-source tool to these?

eValid's Response
eValid is a fundamentally different architecture from Watir and Selenium and therefore offers much different capabilities.

  • The Watir Web Application Testing in Ruby application drives an IE browser from Ruby scripting, an approach that imposes a range of limitations, (which the Watir site admits): no support for Applets, Flash, and ActiveX components; no support for JScript generated popups; and no recording capability, etc.

  • Selenium uses JScript and Iframes to embed playback action in a browser, an approach that precludes browser-internal object interactions and prevents any "direct to the browser face" interactions. Applets, Flash, and ActiveX can't be handled. There are additional access, security, and synchronization limitations, as described in the Against Javascript writeup.

  • eValid is an IE-equivalent browser built using components and libraries from the Windows software development environment that provide direct low-overhead access to every browser capability.

    Because eValid *IS* a browser it has the capability to handle crucial activities such as: opaque object (Applets, Flash, ActiveX) support; playback synchronization; adaptive playback; dynamic DOM validation; event synchronization; activity timing; application-mode operation; etc. All of these activities are integrated seamlessly in a GUI-driven system that records test scripts, plays them back, and analyzes, validates, and times test events.

  • eValid use does not involve step-by-step "training" during script creation, script playback (in single or multiple-browser mode), or basic results analysis. The batch mode interface lets eValid act as the engine in regression test activities and server loading or as a Rich Internet Application (RIA) monitoring agent that reliably runs 1,000's of playbacks per hour.

  • eValid is a commercial product that is fully supported, has maintenance subscriptions, and has a significant installed base of users. In continuous development for 5+ years (the current release is Version 8), eValid is a mature and stable product. The ongoing development activity ensures that eValid can meet the challenge of testing and analyzing new kinds of web-browser enabled applications.
16 July 2007 Web Quality Workshop Includes ISTI Project Description
The upcoming Workshop on Web Quality, Verification and Validation being held in beautiful Como, Italy, 16-20 July 2007 includes a paper and presentation by I. Beicoglio, M. Fusani, G. Lami and G. Trentanni (all from the Institute of Science and Technologies in Informatics (ISTI), part of the CNR complex located in Pisa, Italy) that describes their project in website quality analysis.

Their paper, Establishing a Quality-Model Based Evaluation Process for WebSites (PDF), describes how they will be working to establish a quality model based on eValid data collection and analysis. Ultimately their ISTI work will benefit public and commercial entities throughout Italy.

Thes workshop where their work is being presented is part of the International Conference on Web Engineering 2007 that was mentioned earlier here.

29 June 2007 ACM Transactions on the Web
The newly announced ACM Transactions on the Web (TWEB) is a journal that publishes refereed articles pertaining to all aspects of Web technology.

The initial issue of TWEB, for May 2007 [available by clicking from the above link] includes five technical articles that are full available from an ACM membership account, but you can read the abstracts without having the join the ACM.

Interesting topics. Take a look!

25 June 2007 Human Computer Interaction Conference Features eValid Data
We pleased to note that the issues of web performance measured accurately over the "last mile" are [finally] getting the attention these issues deserve.

At the 5th Symposium on Human-Computer Interaction [CHItaly 2007] held this week in Padua, Italy, one of our eValid partner firms, Mediabeta srl (Multimedia Edutainment & Web Quality Assurance) located in in Messina, Italy, is presenting a paper by Dr. Francesco Micali and Tania Ruggeri entitled Are Italian Regions Website Accessible?.

As you might guess, the data they are referring to has been collected with eValid playbacks done on a standard PC connected to the Web with a standard DSL-type line. In most cases overlooked -- and in some cases supported by very weak measurement data -- the "rubber hits the road" measure of web application performance is what the actual user experiences.

It's worth noting that MediaBeta offers last-mile transaction monitoring services based on eValid usage in Sicily and elsewhere in Italy as well.

7 Jun 2007 DOM "Motion Commands" Simplify Data Extraction
We're pleased to announce additional eValid playback commands that can be used to simplify extraction of data from a page once you have navigated to the page. The idea behind these commands is to take advantage of the positional nature of placement of page elements, but to do so in a way that doesn't require detailed script-level knowledge of details.

Here is a summary of the new DOM Element Manipulation/Motion commands. The commands manipulate the value of a "sourceIndex" within the current page and provide for finding where a particular element is relative to where the sourceIndex currently is, and for up and down motion within the page. In addition, assuming you've manipulated the sourceIndex to be at a particular place, there are commands provided to take actions from that location.

To see an example of how these commands are used, we reworked a prior eValid example that dealt with analyzing shipping costs on the UPS website. As shown in the our writeup, UPS Rate Estimation with Motion Commands, the addition of just four motion commands allows the script to extract -- very precisely -- the specific rate value data that corresponds to a particular kind of shipping request.

1 June 2007 Two June Conferences of Note
Here are two conferences that might be of interest to the Web Quality community:
  • Resolve 2007: Techniques and Tools for Verification and Instruction, Clemson, SC, 11-13 June 2007. This conference in unusual in that the conference proceedings are already published (available on the website above). While formal verification methods may seem somewhat distant from what we do on a daily basis in testing and analyzing web sites, if you check the papers you'll see some very important similarities. Is it possible that verification leads practice?

  • Tools Europe 2007, Zurich, Switzerland, 24-28 June 2007. Again, perhaps a bit afield from web quality, but some of the papers that deal with the details of state machines have a direct bearing on the technology of testing web-based applications (where the client browser has to maintain state if a test is to be meaningful). But, aren't tools simply congealed methodologies, anyway?
30 May 2007 New AJAX Synchronization Support Commands
The growth of AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML) type applications has imposed some slightly stronger requirements on testing because, being asynchronous in nature, an eValid test script may not necessarily be able to rely on eValid's powerful built-in playback synchronization modes (see below).

Every AJAX implementation is a little bit different, and we have found that it requires detailed knowledge of how the particular AJAX application is architected to provide the right kind of synchronization. We have found that common AJAX implementations DO include state information in the DOM (Document Object Model), which eValid can read internally, and which can be viewed with the PageMap.

To meet this very-general kind of need, therefore, we have added special synchronization commands that analyze the contents of the DOM dynamically, and hold back playback pending completion of user-specified checks. Both "positive" (wait for something to be true), and "negative" (wait for something to NOT be true) are provided. Here is the complete Playback Synchronization on DOM Element command description.

To keep these new commands in perspective, here is a Synchronization Mode Summary that describes all of eValid's synchronization modes.

26 May 2007 New Support for Monitoring Mode Operation
We're pleased to announce a major improvement in eValid operation that may have a significant benefit for you if you are running eValid in monitoring mode.
  • eValid now handles (catches) a wide range of runtime exceptions, when running in batch mode (the most common form of monitoring). See: Issue Reporting Support for a complete description.

  • The most common problem monitoring users experience is "cascading failure" described here: Cascading Failure Prevention. The biggest problem we see, based on our own in-house experience, is the tendency to ask the monitoring machine to do more than it really can do. The CPU gets just a bit behind, there's not quite enough RAM to launch the next round of tests, and cascading failure mode results. All of eValid's protections (e.g. the -RT switch) can't work if they never are loaded (eValid's load is incomplete) and thus can't take effect.

    The simplest -- and most prudent -- solution is to add RAM and/or add CPU power or both. You need to assure an adequate margin of safety so that when you are running many eValid playbacks none ever runs our of needed machine resource.

  • Here is a summary of basic user recommendations that should be followed to assure the maximum benefit from eValid in monitoring mode: Monitoring Mode Usage Recommendations.
21 May 2007 The Relative Importance of Web Development
If you follow the evolution of software development on Internet, you may have the impression that every new development is Web based and that the main areas of concern are whether you should develop new application with Ruby on Rail or if you should choose Flash rather than Ajax for the interface. However, if you ask developers, you may find that the Web is not as ubiquitous in their work as you may think.

The last Methods & Tools poll investigated the percentage of new applications that are developed using a Web interface. The question was: "What part of your new developed applications are Web-based (using a browser as user interface)?" We run a similar poll at the end of 2004. The results of this previous poll are displayed below between ()'s.

The answers were:

  • We do not develop Web-based applications 13% (15%)
  • 25% or less of the new applications 14% (10%)
  • 26% to 50% of the new applications 7% (11%)
  • 51% to 75% of the new applications 12% (14%)
  • 75% to 99% of the new applications 25% (29%)
  • 100% of the new applications 29% (21%)

Number of participants: 397 (181)

We can observe that there is a clear majority (54%) of participating organizations that develop 75% or more of their new applications with a Web-based technology. However, the proportion of participants that will use a browser as the interface for new development has not fundamentally changed since 2004. The total for categories "above 50%" has increased only 2%. It seems therefore that in 2004, the Web interface was already been adopted by a majority of its possible users.

Secondly, this means that there is still a large portion of developers that are working today for operating contexts that are outside the Web world, like embedded software or Windows applications. There is however a visible change in the population of the respondents that do develop Web-based applications. The percentage of respondents that develop 100% of their applications for the Web has increased 8% to reach 29%. This means that organizations that could develop for a possible Web context are shifting their efforts towards developing only Web-based applications.

This item by Mr. Franco Martinig is included here with permission from Methods & Tools, where the results will be found at Poll Results.

3 May 2007 Synchronizing AJAX Playbacks
If you are building AJAX applications and want to test them one of the big issues arises because AJAX is, well, ahem, asynchronous. While not normally an issue with eValid, sometimes it can be a big barrier because a test that otherwise is recorded perfectly has the unhappy property of not quite playing back correctly every time.

It's playing too fast, so you naturally enough insert extra Delay commands. But unless you put in a very large time limit, there'll always be a case when "synchronization by delay" fails. (In fact, we strongly recommend against any test using "synchronization by delay" tactics.)

The solution is to provide some kind of external synchronization so that the playback pauses until a particular property obtains. In most AJAX applications the builders provide that information readily in (typically) the top page. To illustrate this process we took a look at the published examples from what an InfoWorld Article said was the #1 AJAX framework, supplied by Backbase.

The result, in which the eValid's SyncOnSelectedObjProperty command is used to synchronize arrival of the completed AJAX-style top page, is given in detail here: Backbase/Explorer Example and Demonstration Script.

30 April 2007 Web Engineering Conference
The upcoming International Conference on Web Engineering (ICWE 2007) is set for July in Como, Italy. Just the Conference location and venue itself would be more than enough to make it "worth the journey" -- but content of the program will seal the deal.

An important aspect of ICWE 2007 is the set of focused workshops -- five of them -- but this one in particular will be of interest to the eValid community: Workshop on Web Quality, Verification and Validation (WQVV 2007), set for 16-20 July.

We'll report here later about the program for the entire ICWE 2007 and on the composition of the WQVV 2007.

12 April 2007 Validating an Object Property
From time to time we hear about how difficult it is to create complex, object-oriented tests that work reliably and successfully validate a computation that is done entirely in JavaScript. As you may know, this requires being able to see inside the page DOM, and sometimes that is quite difficult.

To illustrate how easy eValid is to use in this case we've prepared a detailed example, Validating an Object Property, that illustrates the process you would use in eValid to do this.

The example shows how to record a currency conversion and validate that the resulting calculation is "correct" [i.e. matches what you expect]. A key feature of this process is that ALL of the actions are done intra-browser, i.e. with internal DOM based actions -- at which eValid excels.

If you look at this in detail you'll see that we've been VERY expansive -- it may even look daunting -- but we did it so so you can see what's really going on. In practice, creating the script -- which involves only about 7 essential steps -- probably wouldn't take you more than 5 minutes. Even less for the second one!

Note: We've included the complete eValid test script so you can see how the playback actually operates. It's set up in AUTOPLAY mode -- so it will play back in any eValid V8 browser.

Earlier Activity Summary