Monthly Archives: July 2007

Firefox Plugin: Selenium-IDE

Selenium IDE is an integrated development environment for Selenium tests. It is implemented as a Firefox extension, and allows you to record, edit, and debug tests. Selenium IDE includes the entire Selenium Core, allowing you to easily and quickly record and play back tests in the actual environment that they will run.”

Selenium Remote Control is a test tool that allows you to write automated web application UI tests in any programming language against any HTTP website using any mainstream JavaScript-enabled browser.”

Watching the short tutorial Video will give you an idea how the Firefox-plugin Selenium-IDE records UI-actions while you surf&click which you can base your tests upon.

Podcast: Managing the Gray

If lines like this make you nod your head, ‘Managing the Gray’ by C.C.Chapman is for you:

  • “There is no black and white anymore.”
  • “The minute you are comfortable – you think you got it – you are already falling behind. Right outside your borders there is stuff going on that is going to affect you, whether you know it or not.”
  • “So you got to stay agile, stay fluent, just keep moving, keep rushing forward, take those risks, be smart about, learn from your mistakes – just keep going and HAVE FUN.”


Rasmus 30 Second AJAX Tutorial

This is something I came across browsing a mailing list:


Up to now for me AJAX was a topic which I had on my educational todo-list for ages – of course knowing roughly what it is all about in theory and waiting for the first project to get ‘paid practice’ ;).

Rasmus’ simplification was so inspiring, that I prepared 2 ready to click and easy to reverse-engineer examples from it. All you need is PHP and a browser with JavaScript.

Thanks Rasmus!

XPath – Windows Testing Setup and Cheatsheet

When starting to use XML-related technologies like XSL and XPath, the details and concepts can be intimidating in the first place. One question I had to solve was: How can I create a testing setup on my windows workstation that takes a XML source file and a ‘console’ from which I could execute XPath queries against that XML and see the result. This is comparable to having a mySQL table or database (your XML content) and shooting SQL queries to it via phpMyAdmin.

Here is the setup to get started:

(1) Preparations – do the following:

(2) Get your hands dirty:

  • Start Cooktop and paste the XML Example into the XML-tab.
  • If you have ugly XML or a machine generated oneline XML -> Menu ‘Tools’ / ‘Format current XML Tidy’.
  • Be aware of namespaces! They have to be registered and used throughout your queries. It always confused me when testing, because the expected result is just empty nothing if you get that wrong. Solution: To simplify your test setup, make sure to delete all namespace info in the source XML. The example does not use a namespace, so we can forget about that for the moment.
  • Go to the XPath-tab in Cooktop, read the instructions comment and delete it.
  • All your XPath queries must be preceded by ‘nodes: ‘ or ‘values: ‘! Otherwise pressing the enter-key will not execute your query and just return the cursor to a new line.
  • Write to a new line: ‘nodes: //dealnews_issues/name_de’ and press enter.
  • You see the resulting nodes from your query. Cool!
  • That’s what it is all about with XPath: Isolate a particular XML chunk to further process it in your software or use it in a XSL file for transformation into something different or check for existence or count elements etc. etc.
  • Change your query to ‘values: //dealnews_issues/name_de’ and notice the difference.
  • Now you can get a more complex XML content and play with it. Some good introductory examples of queries can be taken from my XPath Cheatsheet. You will soon discover that XPath can be very powerful and also fun to use.

Additional information: