Solving problems with QWeb

Mar 19, 2021 / by Qentinel

Tuomas Koukkari, Senior Product Specialist and QWeb Owner at Qentinel is an expert in test automation. Now he tells, how he was first introduced to software testing and open source software. QWeb automation library was originally created as a project for Finnish Tax Administration and was finally published as open source in March 2021. Koukkari shares his thoughts on QWeb and its benefits. 

1. Tell something about your background and how you started your career in the testing world?

I began my career as a trainee for a company called Teamware in 1998. I started as a test engineer doing manual testing but quickly started learning test automation (on Windows at that time) using tools available in the company. Later I joined Nokia where we had internal automation tools. Back then we used a keyword-based approach and did test automation on mobile. In Qentinel, I have been doing many test automation and robotic process automation projects for multiple customers.

2. Why was QWeb initiated and what have been your personal learnings related to it?

I think QWeb was initiated because we wanted a library with simpler, cross-platform syntax, and wanted to solve some issues we had faced with other web testing libraries. We also noticed that some modern web frameworks use things like dynamic id’s, which made script maintenance harder. One of the reasons probably was that we ended up making similar tweaks, changes, and custom keywords in many projects; it made sense to do them only once and provide the same keywords to be used in every project.

3. What problems you are solving?

QWeb works (mostly) utilizing UI texts. What you see is what you can interact with. No need to drill down to html code to see what attribute values there are; just use the labels you see on a screen. In a sense, it mimics what a manual test engineer does: “Click ‘Login’, verify that text ‘Welcome, robot’ appears, etc. With QWeb, you don’t need to worry about wait times or unexpected alerts either.

4. What do you think about open source and what has been your experience with library development?

I’ve made some minor contributions to open source in the past. The majority of test libraries I’ve been working on have been proprietary/closed source. It’s very interesting to see what kind of ideas will arise from the community.

5. What is your learning style? 

I personally feel I learn the best by doing, i.e. by following examples and applying what I’ve learned to some real problem I’m facing.

6. Who do you admire in the test automation & open source areas and why?

This is not really test automation, but I’ve recently started playing with a compiled programming language Nim and enjoy it a lot so far. So, my admiration goes to the authors of Nim and the whole Nim community.

7. How do you see the future of software testing and test automation?

Old problems will be solved and new ones will arise. Things are getting more complex all the time and tools and libraries need to support more platforms and environments. So in a nutshell: there will be a lot of work for everyone in the future, too.


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Topics: Software Testing, Test Automation, Robot Framework, Software Development, Test design, Test architecture, qweb, open source

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