I do have a query related to automated software testing.We all know that these days many new test automation tools are being launched. Does this tool still require any coding or scripting knowledge to operate these tools? Or even a novice user can give same accuracy as the experienced one with such automation tools? The question is can we completely rely on any tool?

  • Are you an experienced tester? Do you think a tool could replicate everything you do? – Phil Kirkham Jul 10 '13 at 15:51
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    this is a very broad question without a possible correct answer. voting to close – squeemish Jul 10 '13 at 17:02
  • I think the question itself is worthwhile - automation tools do, unfortunately, advertise on the "no coding/scripting needed" line, and many people have been caught by that. There is a correct answer, and several people have given variations of it already. – Kate Paulk Jul 11 '13 at 11:41
  • Yes definitely this is indeed a broad question but hope in coming days software testing becomes scriptless or codeless. Moreover there are many tools they claim that you need not to code for testing applications. – Prashant Chambakara Jul 17 '13 at 10:30

It isn't necessary to have strong - or any - coding skill to perform software testing or to be a highly skilled tester. No tool will ever replace the ability of a skilled manual tester to observe something that is not quite right in some way and trace the problem.

When it comes to automation, things get interesting. There are numerous tools that claim to eliminate the need for coding, but these do not (in my opinion) scale terribly well and they don't handle complex systems at all well (again, my opinion only). All of them have limits in what they can do and their ability to pass information from one test to another, as well as limits to their ability to recognize parts of the application under test.

The tools that do not claim to eliminate coding require strong coding skills to build robust automation.

In short, coding skills are not needed to test, but they are needed to build good, robust automated regression and to build other automated test utilities.

  • @KatePaulik: Thanks for your wonderful reply.I totally agree with you. When it comes to automation till now it never really meant automated testing because we still needed hard coding to runs the test cases. But in coming days with the new age testing tools, I think this myth is going to be eliminated and hope testing app would be completely script-less. – Prashant Chambakara Jul 17 '13 at 10:28
  • @PrashantChambakara - it would be nice to get to that point. In the meantime testers who can code are very valuable because they can build good automated tests. – Kate Paulk Jul 17 '13 at 11:24
  • @KatePaulik: Definitely after all manual testing is always been admired. – Prashant Chambakara Jul 17 '13 at 11:40

There are tools that can be used without any scripting or coding knowledge, but not so efficient as with even little and not fully relevant scripting or coding knowlege. Many tools work with script languages (like Python, Ruby, etc) and you don't need much time to learn basics of any of these languages. Some time ago I started test automation with a very little Python knowledge (about two weeks of learning). Not that it was easy, but after several tests done, it became easier and easier.

  • Thanks Alissa. But I think that if any tool provides app testing jut by clicking I mean without much or no coding, would be quite helpful as it saves time of the testers. – Prashant Chambakara Jul 10 '13 at 14:37
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    Why do you think it saves time? If you're approaching automation that way you'll be disappointed... – Phil Kirkham Jul 10 '13 at 15:49
  • @PhilKirkham : Definitely this is going to be time saving because they don't need to concentrate on other stuffs than testing. Testers are there to break the code as per sayings. So it was just my point of view. – Prashant Chambakara Jul 10 '13 at 16:07
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    actually, for the first time no-programming automation can appear re saving. But truth is that such tests are harder to support and less.stable. – Alissa Jul 10 '13 at 17:05
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    +1 for pointing out that no-programming automation is usually hard to support and rather fragile at best. – Kate Paulk Jul 10 '13 at 17:10

No, it is not necessary to have strong programming skills to perform software testing. There is still a need for manual testing. There are also industry-specific testing tools that do not rely on programming. For example, there is a commercial package for testing whether your set-top box handles network protocols correctly.

Nonetheless, the overlap between testing and development continues to grow. Developers are expected to assume more of the "obvious" kinds of testing, and the good test jobs -- the ones that pay well and have the most potential for growth -- involve non-trivial amounts of programming. For those jobs, there are no tools that take care of the programming for you.

  • Hey that's really a cool answer you gave. Do you have any ideas of such tools or services that allows almost scripting less testing? – Prashant Chambakara Jul 10 '13 at 14:53
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    Yes I do, but as Alissa pointed out, they don't actually save time in the long run. – user246 Jul 10 '13 at 23:38

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