[TIP] Python Testing book review

Olemis Lang olemis at gmail.com
Mon Mar 8 07:00:50 PST 2010

On Sat, Mar 6, 2010 at 2:25 PM, Tarek Ziadé <ziade.tarek at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Sat, Mar 6, 2010 at 7:55 PM, C. Titus Brown <ctb at msu.edu> wrote:
> [..]
>>> However, in my experience Packt's books tend to suffer from some
>>> pretty bad editing / checking. All it takes is a good reviewer to *run
>>> the code* in the book. All of their books are feeling rushed, and I
>>> feel bad for the authors, since it reflects on them.
>> All it takes is a *good author* to run all the code in the book, first ;).
>> I wrote some hacky little doctest-style code to make sure that the
>> basic examples in my book worked.  Highly recommended approach.
> It's not enough.
> I've done that with my latest book for most examples, but you cannot
> have a fully-covered book because some code snippets cannot be
> doctests. You would need to write test fixtures that would be longer
> than the book itself to have a good test coverage because a book is
> simply not an application.

Ha ! Just because you don't know about `dutest`, of course


> Plus, in the process of writing a book, you have most of the time a
> tight schedule and the
> editor pressures you to return chapters on due dates, telling you that
> a bunch of reviewer will check
> everything on their side.
> At the end, when you get back all the reviews, and have a gut feeling
> that you need to do more reviews yourself, the editor tells you that
> it needs to be published asap, it's hard to tell him:
> "no, I don't want it published now, I want to have 2 months to review
> everything again".
> (and you are also really tempted to finish the project because its exhaustive.)

... but this is correct and something to consider as well . I suppose
it's some kind of «practical beats purity »


> Last, FWIW, I must admit that Packt does a much better work than any
> french editor I worked with, where there are *no* technical reviewers,
> or when they have one, it's someone who barely take a look at the code
> examples. The only techical reviewer I had on a french book was not
> familiar with Python :)




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