Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Scripts, Synchronization, Index/Motion vs. AJAX Text Box Tricks

It seems that AJAX is sneaking in everywhere you look these days. Improving the user experience, as it is supposed to!

It's probably not news to you that Google's venerable main search page now has an "autosuggest" feature -- it feeds you possible targets of your search, based on the keystrokes that appear. It's a powerful, user-friendly feature, and it's done with AJAX methods that continuously interrogate the server with what you've typed as you type it and dynamically modify the page in your browser -- all as you continue to type in your search.

The main question is: How do you test this kind of thing? Here are some answers:

  • If you want to make a manual recording the regular steps don't work, because it's AJAX. Here is how to make a good recording, using out-of-the-box methods for Recording of Autosuggest Text Boxes.

  • But if you want to do the same test, but you're willing to spend the time to create the commands using eValid Index/Motion commands, here is an example of Autosuggest Test Box Processing with Index/Motion Commands
  • A rather more complex example of the technique is this scripted solution which exercises the ICEfaces Autocompleter Function, where the script, like the one above, is entirely self-synchronizing and fully tolerant to all but drastic page structure changes.
All three examples illustrate distinct ways eValid methods can be used to test dynamic autosuggestion boxes automatically.

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