The lovely people of Packt Publishing asked me to review Karen Tracey's latest book Django 1.1 Testing and Debugging.

I didn't actually read the book but rather skimmed it, apart from some selected parts and from what I read it's obvious that Karen has an ability to write to people who are not experts on the subject. Years of being a top contributor on the Django users mailing list must have something to do with it.

But here's the cracker. I didn't learn anything from this book (actually, I wasn't aware of the pp command in the pdb debugger). Is that a complaint about the book? No! It just means that the book was aimed at beginners and apparently I'm not a beginner any more. Great!

One thing I would have liked to see is more about testing strategy since this is something beginners often have problems with. I don't know if there even is such a word as "testing strategy" but I'm referring to the thinking behind what to test and more importantly sometimes what not to test. Beginners have a tendency to write tests for the most specific things and thus spending all their time assuring the most unrealistic scenarios are covered. Also, a lot of beginner tests I see check basic things like types which the semi-compiler will just automatically cover for you. Perhaps for a beginner, just getting some tests up and running this is a big step forward.

I'm a little bit disappointed that my lovely gorun wasn't mentioned in the book :) Perhaps the next version Karen?



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