Rational Functional Tester v8.1 was introduced to the world yesterday, and brought forth a significant new direction in functional testing for IBM Rational. Here’s the full laundry list of updates:
- Enhanced visual test representation for no code test creation
- Drag and drop of controls into test script
- Story board thumbnail test representation
- Updated integration with IBM Rational Quality Manager Express Edition and IBM Rational Quality Manager Standard Edition V2.0 and V1.0.1
- Multiple project area support in the Execution Adapter
- Support for keywords in IBM Rational Quality Manager
- New integrations with IBM Rational Team Concert
- Assets maybe managed within Jazz SCM
- IBM Rational Team Concert V2.0 as an optional feature in IBM Rational Functional Tester
- Expanded packaged applications and environment support
The first item, Storyboard Testing, deserves a little more inspection.
Storyboard Testing is a new, visual approach to automated test script creation. It provides the tester with a new visual representation of test script actions. A three pane view of the test provides:
- A natural language description of test actions
- A screenshot view of the screen being tested, with control highlighting to further indicate the control being used
- A storyboard view of the script flow, showing thumbnails of all screens accessed during the test in sequential order
This new visual representation significantly simplifies test script authoring and editing. The natural language steps together with the screenshots provide testers with an easy way to understand the test flow. Test editing can be done from this view as well. You can insert verifications, data driven commands and even Java code from this perspective.
This feature does not come at the expense of the traditional test script approach. This new storyboard testing view is merely an overlay of the Java test script as it has always existed. Users already familiar with Rational Functional Tester are able to work as they always have, directly with the test script.
This new method of testing will accelerate test creation by making it simpler to read and edit tests as well as open up test automation to those who were previously intimidated by having to work with test script code.