Sunday, March 12, 2006

Automation, a developer's best friend

This is not going to be a big post, but I definitely wanted to push automation as a Good Thing.

You don't need to go whole hog, with an expensive framework supporting email and IM's the build admin when things go wrong. Shell scripts, SQL, and text files will do.

Automate your builds, so you can build any part of your system with a single command.

Automate you build notifications, so the build admin can be aware of errors ASAP, and notify your developers.

Automate your regression tests, so you can make sure you don't lose anything when you add new features.

If you are fortunate enough to have management that supports agile development, automate your new feature tests so you can confirm correct function of the new stuff.

Where possible, make your GUIs build automatically from text-based description files, so you can enable/disable features without requiring code changes.

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