Our Retrospective to Accelerate Open Source Test Automation

Second after second, time flies.

Ending the year is a traditional time for introspection. It is the opportunity to step back from the constant rush of activities happening quarter after quarter and plan better for the future.

We performed a retrospective from the last 12 months for the evolution of Cerberus Testing, the open-source test automation platform. We wanted to share with the community our learnings and planning adaptation.

This article summarises the evolution trajectory, sharing past and future improvements. The roadmap is structured in the key area of Experience, Automation, Integrations and Community.

Let’s start with the most visible changes.

Continuously improve the test automation experience

User experience is essential to successful test automation. Our focus in Cerberus Testing has always been to provide faster feedback loops supporting transversal collaboration between the product, engineering and operations team.

The last months brought improvements to ease the onboarding of non-technical users. In-application tutorials made their apparition with guided navigation on the main use-cases. These guides can be activated anytime to expand your initiative.

In addition, the documentation portal was separated into user, administrator and use-cases to better answer each persona’s needs. Combined with all the minor fixes and improvements, the end-to-end experience supports faster iterations.

Figure 1: The tutorials, redesign of the documentation on the left, and the Selenium import on top.

The import of Selenium IDE scenarios made its apparition to accelerate test creation. You can build a test case with a one-click import of the standard format. Leveraging the modular testing capability of Cerberus Testing, you can quickly build your test library.

Next improvements focus on incrementally evolving the user interface to be more reactive and oriented on the use-cases. The end goal is to accelerate the delivery of shippable quality for the teams collaborating on test automation.

To achieve that global performance, the engine and integrations are also evolving.

Keep enriching the core test automation capabilities

The engine of Cerberus Testing provides the core test automation features. It enables the combination of the test repository, test execution and test reporting in a single platform. The variety of use-cases like web, mobile, API test automation evolved.

Erratum is one important feature of self-healing now available in Cerberus. This capability improves the stability of automated tests by finding locators that change using a statistical algorithm. 

Figure 2: Erratum self-healing feature in action to increase the reliability of your tests.

The good part? It only requires one successful execution and not an entire data set to train a machine learning algorithm. And a chrome extension is available to add elements to your actions or controls easily.

That does not end here.

Support the evolution of test automation use-cases

The evolution of digital technologies with distributed, open and reactive systems increase the support required in test automation. We therefore focus on increasing the use-cases covered. Get a highlight of each release by reading these articles on the 4.12 and 4.13.

Concretely, specific needs raised by the community are now supported:

  • Optical Character Recognition (OCR)
  • One Time Password (OTP) 
  • Shadow DOM

We also focus on supporting better the testing of distributed applications for the community. You can already implement SOAP, REST, GraphQL and even Kafka testing inside Cerberus, combining the steps with web or mobile actions. 

Figure 3: The typical use-cases and process to test a Kafka driven application.

Improvements are coming for advanced cases like the support for Avro schema. These requirements reinforce the need for connectivity within the ecosystem. More partners are expected in the near future in the test repository, execution and reporting.

That’s why we are building a platform to accelerate the integrations.

Accelerate test automation with more integrations

The capability to interact with other systems is essential to improve test automation. We have to quickly add new tests, connect them with an existing referential, execute tests in various devices and in different clouds—all of that keeping visibility.

The public APIs of Cerberus Testing was already used for specific integrations via scripting when a native integration was not available. While this works, we worked to drastically improve the APIs integration experience.

The APIs were enriched following a DDD approach to respond to more integration needs. Additionally, the security keys and public APIs portal are now available to accelerate your integration, but also that of external partners.

Figure 4: The DDD public APIs of Cerberus Testing now available.

The need for integration is being worked at three levels:

  • Test repository to sync requirements referential (e.g. JIRA/Xray, Yest)
  • Test execution for execution farms (LambdaTest) or notifications.
  • Test reporting to export and consolidate execution data.

The public APIs aim to accelerate the integration of external products for these use-cases. Feel free to share with us if you identify a valuable use case or want to work on an integration with us.

In the meanwhile, Google Chat and Microsoft Teams are now part of the standard integrations available to receive notifications. Event hooks are also appearing to let you define flexibility reactions to defined events happening in Cerberus Testing.

Animating the community is the best way to keep focusing on value.

Keep investing and growing the community

Our open-source community officially started in 2013. We are now more than 30 contributors to the product completed by the larger user community in various companies and sectors. The content evolved to improve collaboration.

The initial and common way to share is still through the Slack channels. The #general feed is the most used to regularly share questions and practices. Join the community Slack here or ask for an invite on GitHub here

Figure 5: The GitHub stats of Cerberus Testing with more than 30 contributors.

Enriching the content was also one of our priorities. The video library is enriched with tutorials and meetups videos on the Youtube channel. In addition, regular articles are available for you to Follow on Medium.

A series of presentations at testing conferences and meetups was also the opportunity to interact with the larger community. One workshop of continuous testing was held at the main testing & quality conference in France (JFTL). Join the Meetup group here.

The focus is to continue growing and improving.

Join the open-source test automation platform

Continuous improvement is essential to provide an incremental value. The shared direction on the different areas of experience, capabilities, integrations will make the difference to improve your test automation journey.

We aim to accelerate more teams searching for fast feedback loops of continuous testing. The current ecosystem is pushing for continuous value delivery; there is no time to lose in coding yet another framework.

Our mantra “Stop Coding, Start Testing” has been pushing Cerberus Testing in the Cloud with no installation and operations workload on your end. You can create more value for the business by focusing on the product.

Start for free here.

Our Retrospective to Accelerate Open Source Test Automation
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