Archive for December, 2020

Why I Hate WebApps

Thursday, December 31st, 2020

I have avoided deep diving web application development for a long time because the segment undergoes a lot of technological churn for really nothing.  IHMO web applications are better now than 10 years ago but they still do not rival the stability, performance, and usability of desktop applications.  In short Web 2.0 is a flop if you base your conclusion on widely available web applications. It’s hard to write a web application and get it right.  Right today, may not be right tomorrow since you have no control over the vehicle on which you’re hitching a ride; namely the browser. 

I was reminded of this again today when NoFrills redirected me to their flyer page in an email.  The page asked me to enter a postal code even though I was automatically logged into my profile and my preferred store was shown in the upper right.  I might have dismissed that, except the postal code entry control flashed on the page and disappeared.  You might think it was my browser, but I am using the latest FireFox and it did the same thing under Chrome.

I bank with TD Canada and their website often displays an error message after I log in.  If I login again, it is always successful, just the first time I quite often get the following error:

I needed to install CodeSite 5.2.2 so I could compile hcOPF under D7 and the EMBT portal provided the binary installer, but there was no corresponding serial under my registered products (who needs data integrity anyway).  So I decided to contact support, and went to their web page and chose the product and got an animated response. You may notice the disclaimer in white with a red background saying use another browser if you have issues with FireFox. I guess fixing it so it works in the remaining two browsers is too hard.

So if a basic entry form is too difficult to get right in 2020, I don’t think the web has progressed all that much since the 90s. Mind you the 90s rocked! Hopefully the 2020s will be better on all fronts despite the horrific beginnings.

Testing Options for Delphi

Thursday, December 3rd, 2020

Depending on the version of Delphi in use, unit/integrate testing tools include:

DUnit
-the original framework with the latest version of 9.4.  Embarcadero stills ships this with Delphi.

DUnitX
-released by VSoft Technologies (makers of FinalBuilder) and requires D2010 or higher
-uses attributes to mark test related methods

DUnit2
-a fork of DUnit started by Peter McNab
-introduces SetupOnce/TearDownOnce and other enhancements
-has been extended by tiOPF project

SmokeTest
-newer framework for Joylon Smith, recently released that uses Interfaces rather than abstract classes

DUnitLite
-an extension to DUnit offering more check methods with additional datatypes, and a fluid interface

OpenCTF
- an extension to DUnit to provide testing for components

I assume most people using newer versions of Delphi are using DUnitX, and that most people also use TestInsight to ensure their tests are executed when code changes are made.  What framework do you use and why?

If I missed any, please let me know.