A software bug is a problem that causes a program to crash or produce output that is invalid. This is caused by logic that is insufficient or erroneous. Most bugs are a result of human error in a program’s source code or design. And most software does not come without bugs. In fact, bugs are so prevalent and can have such expensive consequences that in 2002 the US Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology concluded that they cost the US economy almost $60 million annually. This is why automated software testing solutions at the start of software’s life cycle are so important. Bugs can be identified and eliminated before they have any knock-on effects or consume too much time.
Automated testing involves the use of special software to monitor the carrying out of tests. This enables actual outcomes to be compared with expected ones and allows the identification of certain classes of defects that might otherwise remain undetected.
Test automation can make repetitive but essential tasks far easier and less time-consuming to run and can do so in a formalised way that is easy to add to with additional tests as required. Some software testing tasks, such as regression testing, can often be somewhat time-consuming when done manually. Once automated tests are set up, they can be run repeatedly and can prove a low-cost way of testing software – particularly of products that are maintained over a long lifetime.
Approaches to Testing
There are many different approaches to test automation; however, the most widely used are graphical user interface (GUI) testing and API-driven testing. The former is a framework that creates user interface actions and notices the changes that occur in the user interface, thus validating whether the output is correct. Meanwhile, the latter is a framework that uses a programming interface to determine whether the behaviour under test is correct. Generally, the application user interface is bypassed altogether in this case. And automated testing through suppliers such as Mytesters can provide the ideal solution for your software debugging requirements.
While test automation tools can prove to be expensive in the short term, when used in the longer term, such as for regression testing, they can show themselves to be a cost-effective solution to software testing tasks.