Ajaxian Podcasts, the Ajax Experience Conference

Just listened to Episode 13 and Episode 14 of the Ajaxian Podcast. Excellent.

In Ep 14, as usual, the guys did a great job of presenting the information in a concise, always-on-topic manner. I think it’s pretty clear that they have a detailed outline set up beforehand and they stick to it without sounding canned. They went over a ton of Ajax info but the standouts, for me, were DPolls(Ajax poll system with lots of features and effects), Dojo’s File Upload Widget, a warning that IE6 hacks might break in IE7, type-checking in JS and the impact on IDEs, and an IE library that allows for cross-browser “Canvas” functionality using VML (I LOVE CANVAS). They also discussed the frameworks and tools that they are partial to for their own web development work.

Also in Ep 14, they discussed the Ajax Experience conference they set up for May 10-12 in SF. Wow! They have a great lineup, a decent price ($1000), and they are keeping attendance small (500).

Ep 13, an interview with Patrick Lightbody of WebWork, was also great. Lots of info about WebWorks (including a mention of the Dojo/Webworks publish and subscribe technique), and the conversation at the end about Selenium was neat.  From the Selenium website:

Selenium is a test tool for web applications. Selenium tests run directly in a browser, just as real users do. And they run in Internet Explorer, Mozilla and Firefox on Windows, Linux, and Macintosh. No other test tool covers such a wide array of platforms.

  • Browser compatability testing. Test your application to see if it works correctly on different browsers and operating systems. The same script can run on any Selenium platform.
  • System functional testing. Create regression tests to verify application functionality and user acceptance.

Selenium uses a unique mechanism which allows it to run on so multiple platforms. Installed with your application webserver, Selenium automatically deploys its JavaScript automation engine — the Browser Bot — to your browser when you point it at the Selenium install point on your webserver. Thus, you must have write access to the machine your web application server is running on to install Selenium.

“Considering the simplicity of it, it is almost surprising that no one has thought of doing this previously. The framework is simple and the code is neat and very maintainable. Sometimes it takes a work of genius to find the uncomplicated solution to a potentially complicated problem.” – Antony Marcano

Selenium was developed by team of programmers and testers at ThoughtWorks (see below). It is open-source software and can be downloaded and used without charge. It is currently under active development by our team. Stay tuned for updates and further announcements.

ThoughtWorks is a leader in Agile development methods for enterprise software development. Selenium is designed specifically for the acceptance testing requirements of Agile teams. However, teams using more traditional development will also find it useful.

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