Appium’s Pros, Cons & What The (Testing Framework) Future Might Look Like

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Since Perfecto is sponsoring and attending the annual Appium 2018 conference today, it’s a great time to take a look at some pros and cons, how it stacks up against the competing tools and what might be around the corner.

Benefits of Appium

What’s great about Appium:

  • It has a strong active open source community
    • Appium is by far the leading open-source test framework for cross-platform(mobile) native test automation (iOS, Android)
    • Appium is consistently backed by a large, very dynamic community, with steady support, commits, etc.
  • It has strong support for end-to-end testing in multiple programming languages
    • Appium provides support for multiple development languages through Remote WebDriver language bindings (Java, JavaScript, Perl, Python, C#)
    • Appium can cover black box end-to-end test flows including outside-the-app scenarios (e.g. initiating a call, sending a text message)

Challenges with Appium

Some areas where Appium could be better:

  • Setting up Appium locally can be a challenge: Teams are required to download, install and configure their environment which means having a local Android and iOS device available and connected.
  • Working with app objects for both iOS and Android isn’t easy, and falls into the top challenges (below) coming from practitioners. Since the Appium framework relies on iOS XCUITest and Espresso (Android’s UI automation framework), users needs to be familiar with the object structure, and know how to use the Appium object spy correctly.
  • Slow test execution. Tests can be slow due to the remote webdriver dependency, network issues and processing commands.
  • Test framework stability – Stability issues can occur when executing through CI or at scale and in parallel.
  • Test automation coverage and keeping up with latest mobile OS – Being able to fully cover gestural inputs, environment conditions, device settings and more, as well as support immediately latest Beta and GA versions of iOS and Android. Community supported solutions frequently move slower than handset vendor/mobile OS innovations.

Top Challenges from users on the Appium discussion board

Comparison of Mobile App Testing Frameworks

Despite Appium’s leadership today, DevOps teams are also adopting Espresso and XCUITest.

Since there is no perfect solution with regards to testing frameworks, the best solution for your needs might be best met by mixing various test frameworks across the DevOps pipeline.

Here’s a comparison of the leading testing frameworks:

Where is Mobile Application Testing Headed?

My testing framework intuition tells me that:

  • Appium will share more of the testing framework market with Espresso and XCUITest.
  • Functional testing using Espresso/XCUITest will become part of commit- triggered built-testing.  
  • Full end-to-end testing using Appium will be leveraged during full regression testing.
  • Appium stability will improve and execution times will shrink – it will get better & faster!
  • Hybrid test execution will become supported. Appium scripts will be able to trigger embedded Espresso/XCITests.

Conclusion

Appium is great! It’s got:

  • A strong open source community
  • Outstanding support for a number of programming languages
  • The ability to handle end-to-end test flows

Appium is weak:

  • In test performance and stability
  • In keeping up with the latest OS features (e.g. gestural)
  • In setup time

XCUITest and Espresso are also leading the market with strong user bases and helps fill in the gaps where Appium falls short – so keep an eye out for those other tools!!

It will be interesting to hear the upcoming Appium roadmap at the Appium 2018 Conference. Sign up for our live webinar to hear our take on the current and future state of testing frameworks and how Appium might fit into your DevOps toolchain.

The post Appium’s Pros, Cons & What The (Testing Framework) Future Might Look Like appeared first on Perfecto Blog.

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Snapchat’s iPhone X-exclusive Lenses look more realistic than usual

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Snapchat has discovered a way to leverage the power of iPhone X's TrueDepth camera — and that means you'll have access to exclusive Lenses if you use Apple's all-screen mobile device. Starting today, you'll see TrueDepth-enabled Lenses appear period…
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First Look: IAB Tech Lab Releases ‘Guidelines for Identifier for Advertising (IFA) on OTT Platforms’ for Public Comment

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The IAB Technology Laboratory has released new “Guidelines for Identifier for Advertising on OTT Platforms” with recommendations on how to maintain a high-quality advertising experience within over-the-top television (OTT) environments—advocating that stakeholders manage advertising-related activities through an identifier for advertising (IFA).

Available for public comment through May 3, 2018, the technical guidelines provide instructions on best practices for delivering targeted ads, as well as controlling ad frequency and rotation across a wide variety of disparate smart TVs, connected devices, and other OTT systems.

In order to be compliant with these guidelines, devices and apps must store and send the following parameters as part of any ad request:

  • An identifier for advertising (IFA) – required, unless the user has opted in to limit ad tracking, an IFA must be a unique value that is completely disconnected from a hardware ID, MAC address, IMEI, or IP address
  • An associated IFA type – identifying the source of the IFA, whether device-generated, publisher-provided, or temporary
  • Limit ad tracking (LAT) – an opt-out mechanism to respect the user’s privacy choices

The guidelines also feature specific advice and intelligence for consumer electronics manufacturers, OTT app publishers, and ad/measurement platforms to address the needs of each of these stakeholder groups.

“After linear TV, more Americans watch video content on OTT than on VOD or DVR, and the medium is skyrocketing,” said Dennis Buchheim, Senior Vice President and General Manager, IAB Tech Lab. “The traditional semi-persistent cookie we are accustomed to using as an identifier on browsers isn’t at play across OTT systems, so we need to deploy other types of identifiers to ensure that ad experiences are optimal for consumers. These guidelines will direct stakeholders down the path of best practices to allow OTT to grow and evolve as a significant advertising platform.”

“Between smart TVs, connected devices, and other OTT systems out in the marketplace—all with varied approaches to identification—we’re looking at a ‘Tower of Babel’ challenge,” said J. Allen Dove, CTO, SpotX, and member of the IAB Tech Lab OTT Technical Working Group. “The new IAB Tech Lab guidelines solve these challenges and improve overall user experience. We are hoping that others in the industry also contribute their input to make these recommendations even more effective.”

After public comment concludes, the IAB Tech Lab OTT Technical Working Group will evaluate and incorporate the feedback received and release a final version. To review the proposed guidelines, click here.

The post First Look: IAB Tech Lab Releases ‘Guidelines for Identifier for Advertising (IFA) on OTT Platforms’ for Public Comment appeared first on Mobile Marketing Watch.


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To Understand The Atmospheres Of Distant Exoplanets, Look To Your Car Engine

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The next time you’re stuck in a mundane traffic jam, find some excitement in your car engine’s secret identity: it’s actually not so different from the exotic exoplanets in our universe.

Seriously. Stay with me here.

French astronomers discovered that computer models used to simulate how car engines emit pollutants could also be used to model hot exoplanet atmospheres.

An artist's impression of a "hot Jupiter," a gauzy color-streaked planet with a star peeking up behind it. Exoplanets like these can, surprisingly, be modeled by those that simulate car engines.
An artist’s impression of a “hot Jupiter.” Image Credit: NASA, ESA & G. Bacon

The planets in question are scorching goliaths. They’re the size of Neptune or Jupiter, but orbit 50 times closer to their star than Earth does the Sun. This gives them hydrogen-rich gaseous atmospheres of 1,000 to 3,000 degrees Celsius (1,832 to 5,431 degrees Fahrenheit), which whip around at speeds of 10,000 kilometers (over 6,000 miles) per hour.

Under such intense (to say the least) conditions, scientists historically had trouble modeling what chemicals might be found in these atmospheres. As the hellishly hot, insanely fast gasses swirl, they interact in unusual ways  – creating chemicals that don’t fit the typical models astrophysicists use to simulate planets.

Almost shockingly, these extreme temperature and pressure conditions are not so different from those found in car engines. Car engine pollution models can examine temperatures over 2,000 degrees Celsius, along with a wide range of pressures. This makes them flexible enough to study warm exoplanets, too. 

Since 2012, the research team has used these models to create simulations of the atmospheres on hot Jupiters and warm Neptunes, which were then made available to the astrophysics community in an open-access database.

The next step for this research will be to incorporate data from research at particle accelerators, which can provide information on how molecules absorb ultraviolet light at the extreme temperatures of exoplanets — data that was previously only available at room temperature.

“Other fields of research have an important role to play in the characterization of the fantastic diversity of worlds in the Universe, and in our understanding of their physical and chemical nature,” explained Oliva Venot, a lead authors and a researcher at Laboratoire Interuniversitaire des Systèmes Atmosphériques (Interuniversity Laboratory of Atmospheric Systems), in a press release.

These models could help scientists figure out how these far-away exoplanets work without ever being able to reach them. After all, at the moment, our car engines can’t yet transport us out to distant worlds. But they could get us a little closer to understanding them.

The post To Understand The Atmospheres Of Distant Exoplanets, Look To Your Car Engine appeared first on Futurism.

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The Play Store’s latest look (with oodles of white space) is spreading to more users, ready or not

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Interface design is a never-ending task, and no matter how much you might love the way an app looks and feels right now, there’s always that angel (or is it devil?) over the developer’s shoulder, whispering, “Couldn’t that be a little more optimal? What if you moved this button over here?” And so, things change: sometimes for the better, hopefully not so much for the worse. A little over a month ago, we shared with you a new visual style that Google was flirting with for the Play Store, seemingly sucking the color out of the app and, well, not really replacing it with anything, leaving us stuck with vast expanses of empty white.

Read More

The Play Store’s latest look (with oodles of white space) is spreading to more users, ready or not was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Facebook’s redesigned VR avatars look more like you

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The avatars in Facebook's social VR environment, Spaces, could use some work: they have a flat, cartoonish look, and you'll be hard-pressed to find one that really reflects your look. Accordingly, Facebook is giving these avatars a makeover. The ne…
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Leak: This is what the LG G7 could look like

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LG smartphones are having a weird year. After skipping its usual flagship launch at Mobile World Congress, rumors suggested LG threw out the G7’s original design and came up with something else entirely. A new leak may give us our clearest look at what might be the phone’s final design. The CAD render, courtesy of OnLeaks and Mr. Phone, shows a device that is very, umm, 2018. Small bezels, dual cameras, and the ever-controversial notch are present. The design doesn’t look like much of a shift from the G6, with a glass back and metal frame. However, some LG fans…

This story continues at The Next Web
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Get a lifetime of WordPress themes that don’t look like everybody else’s site for over 80% off

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Visualmodo offers an array of WordPress themes that break away from the norm. Right now, you can get lifetime access to their complete library of gorgeous WordPress templates for only $ 39 (over 80 percent off) from TNW Deals.
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Telltale’s ‘The Walking Dead’ Final Season First Look Coming Next Week

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Telltale is famous for picking up every IP in sight and using its famous (or infamous) recipe to turn it into a serialized game, a tactic that has led to the company running out of steam and letting go a large part of its employees in what was the loudest sign that somewhere along the way, Telltale lost its way. Still, Telltale does have some important games coming out in the near future, and The Walking Dead: The Final Season is definitely the one fans most want to get their hands on. If you are one of the many who want to see how Clementine’s story ends, you can get the first peek of the game next Friday, April 6th, at 12:30 PM ET during the developer’s PAX East panel. The reveal will also be streamed on Twitch, so everyone can get to enjoy the show.

If you’ve been following Telltale’s games, you probably know that The Walking Dead [Free] is the series that put the developer on the map and, for many, season one of the game was the best the company has produced (though others see Tales from the Borderlands as the best series). Clementine, the female protagonist who was a child in the original season and has become the protagonist of later seasons, is for many the best character in the series and is the focus of the final season. Telltale cleverly showed that passing of the baton from Lee Everett, the main character of the original series, to Clementine in a screenshot revealed today. The Final Season screenshot shows Clementine wielding an axe and defending a young child from incoming walkers in a pose identical to a screenshot from the original series, where Clementine was the child in danger and Lee was wielding the axe. If you had any doubts that the series has come full circle, this screenshot should dispel them.

Speaking of the series as a whole (spoilers following), the journey hasn’t been a pleasant one for any of the characters. Clementine, trying to survive in a world infested by walkers just like in the TV show with the same name, lost Lee at the end of the first season after a pretty harrowing journey and some awful choices only to see more people lose their lives defending her in later season. In addition, she has had to deal with other survivors thinking she’s been bit, witness all kinds of abuse, and other, similarly “pleasant” experiences. In the previous episode, A New Frontier, Clementine had to deal with a group of survivors who started out with good intentions and ended up twisted in all kinds of ways—which is par for the course in this series and the TV show. The end of the episode finds Clementine heading out of Richmond (where her journey had taken her) to find AJ, the baby of one of Clementine’s fellow survivors that Clementine once thought dead.

We don’t have too much information on the plot of the final season, but I have a hunch it won’t be a happy one. Clementine, as the developers have pointed out, has become a symbol of hope throughout the franchise, so I’m very interested to see what her ultimate fate will be. One of the screenshots Telltale tweeted today shows Clementine’s famous cap abandoned in the middle of a field, which I wouldn’t describe as a hopeful screenshot. Still, I have a hard time believing Telltale will kill this extremely popular character. No word yet on a release date, but I don’t think it’s too far into the future. Looking forward to seeing where Clementine’s journey ends?

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