We have liftoff! Codebots internal launch has begun
by Indi Tansey, Aug 04, 2017
Guess what? We have just launched the brand spanking new Codebots MVP! Everyone at HQ is beyond excited to log in and test drive the new platform and build projects using the awesome new tools. This internal launch puts us one giant leap closer to releasing the platform to some of our eager partners and beta testers, so it’s safe to say it’s been a pretty crazy time of late.
So what is the Codebots MVP?
In short, managing the quality of your software just got a whole lot easier! With our MVP, we have released two of the coolest features; what we call the ‘Stories Backlog’ and ‘Testing zone.'
The Stories Backlog is a list of your project’s requirements broken up into Epics (a term for high-level features used by agile software developers). Under each Epic you can add User Stories (certain tasks a user does) and test them against each other. The benefit of this feature is that it is now easier to track your project’s progress during a build – making it easier than ever to manage and maintain accountability as a project captain.
However, the Testing feature is where we take it to the next level. At Codebots, we test our code using scenarios that we created with a template (given, when, then). ‘Given’ refers to the setup of the test, ‘when’ refers to the task you perform, and ‘then’ refers to the outcome you expect. When you test user scenarios, you can see if the results of your test match the outcome desired.
Traditionally, testing is one of the major pain points in software development. However, the Codebots MVP means we can now drag and drop to build a scenario for the Testing feature. This is a big win for non-techies trying to build software. Not only can bots write the development target now, but they can test too.
"To be able to write tests without writing code by dragging and dropping blocks--that's mind-blowing!" - Naveen Kumar, Lead Tester
Of course for all the technical users, the Testing feature can still be switched between the drag and drop functionality to a text input functionality. We believe it is important for a user to be able to customise the codebots platform to fit his or her software developing skill level--it all depends on your preference.
The Codebots MVP has made managing tests easier too. One screen allows you to view all your scenarios (tests) and identify which ones are running (if they aren’t running, you can select 'multiple' to start all of them at once), which ones have passed, and which ones have failed. You can expand the failed tests to view a list of all the steps in the scenario; the highlighted ones you where the test failed. While these failed steps are usually returned to a developer in the form of a technical report, the Codebots platform provides a readable pass or fail icon.
Why are we so excited?
Traditionally, testing runs distinctly separate from the management part of the process (ie. the progress of stories and app functionality). This often leaves the testers and developers as the only people in the company who can read the progress of the software’s functionality.
What the Codebots MVP has been able to do is bring both the testing and the management (user stories) together to provide traceability in software development! Being able to directly associate user stories with scenarios (tests) creates a Traceability Matrix on the backend of our MVP. This is a visual representation of which stories have passed which tests.
"The integration between user stories and testing brings the developer, designer and project manager together, allowing them to collaborate as a team." - Isaac Joekong, Lead UX Designer
The benefit of this is that the MVP can produce real-time statistics demonstrating the health of the software. These appear on the dashboard of the Codebots platform as simple icons, making accountability and project co-ordination easy for non-technical project captains.
Where to from here?
We are like a kid with a new toy, playing with our new MVP, and this is just the beginning of the Codebots platform vision. We already have a bunch of new features in development and are really excited to start releasing the MVP to our partners in the coming months. Keep an eye out for more updates to the Stories Backlog feature such as tracking changes to the user stories and an ability to manage the components used from the software model in each feature. If you would like to be a Codebots Pilot and get early access to our beta, sign up here.