Future of DOM based UI testing

Technology specific object identification, supported applications, web technologies, and 3rd party controls.
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2014 7:50 pm

Future of DOM based UI testing

Post by rawatankit6 » Fri Sep 05, 2014 3:55 pm

I came this question across a networking website and found it very intriguing. It's not a question about how Ranorex will help me solve a question but on the extensive use to extJS in applications.

I work with Selenium for quite a while now and was very happy with it for some time. However recently, I get more and more projects where I see extensive use of JavaScript. For example webpages written with ExtJS. As a result, the DOM structure of the webpage becomes unreliable for automation purposes and it gets harder and harder to make it work with any other DOM based automation tool.

Now, given the fact that the above-mentioned technologies become more and more popular and relatively simple HTML webpages are harder to find, what does that mean in terms of automation tools like Ranorex? As far as I see it, if that trend continues, and I see no reason why it wouldn't, will DOM based tools become useless? Are there any other tools that somehow interact better with JS based webpages? Don't you think the future is heading towards image recognition and testing based on the "eye" of the user.

Will be great to know some thoughts and\or personal experiences on that topic.

Posts: 2683
Joined: Tue Feb 07, 2012 4:14 pm
Location: Austin, Texas, USA

Re: Future of DOM based UI testing

Post by krstcs » Fri Sep 05, 2014 4:23 pm

MY OPINION FOLLOWS... Take it for what it's worth. :D

My first thought is that if developers are relying on ANY framework to correctly implement automation instrumentation for them (which is what you are really referring to) then they are making a serious mistake.

The developer is responsible for CORRECTLY implementing automation and accessibility standards in their code, no matter what technology they are using. Just because ExtJS has a poor implementation does not absolve the developer of their responsibility to correct those flaws and put accessibility into the product.

Ranorex (and some other tools) uses accessibility standards as a basis for object identification. If it isn't done properly in the AUT, the tools won't work correctly. This is a BUG in the AUT (not the test tool) and should be treated as such.

As for ExtJS being more widely used, I see more use of other JS frameworks, like NodeJS, AngularJS, jQuery, etc. than ExtJS, but my view is limited where I am.

EDIT TO ADD: In short, I don't think DOM based testing is going away anytime soon.
Shortcuts usually aren't...