(OTUG) Knowledge in tests

From: Kent Beck (kentbeck@csi.com)
Date: Fri Mar 19 1999 - 16:37:00 EST


I got so carried away that I forgot to answer your final question. The
knowledge isn't just in the code and the programmers, it is also in the
tests. And the tests don't decay over time, not if keeping them running is
part of the culture. If you start to let tests slide, all bets are off. As
long as they are running, though, you have a firm foundation for learning
everything else you need to know about the system.

And I'm fine with leaving a roadmap behind- "A Walking Tour of the XXX
System". But that isn't a useful document during development, not with
tests, and pairing, and... At least, I haven't found it so.

I had the guys at Chrysler writing literate programs of key architectural
pieces. Everybody enjoyed the writing, and they felt like they had done
something useful. Nobody ever read them. They stopped writing them. Clever
idea, not useful in context.

Kent

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