Session

A Visual Testing Revolution

Testing web apps is hard. Traditional automation catches some problems but often misses visual bugs! What if your formatting is off or colors are wrong? That’s why you need visual testing! You’ll simplify your assertions while covering what matters to your users! Come learn how to do it.

Assertions for traditional functional testing for web apps can be complicated and fragile. Think about all the things on a page that should be checked. Pages can have dozens of elements, and testers frequently make tradeoffs between things to check and time spent automating the selectors and assertion conditions. Visual testing simplifies that by eliminating all those assertions with single-line snapshot calls. Plus, those snapshot comparisons capture all meaningful things on the page. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a snapshot is worth a thousand assertions. This greatly simplifies test automation effort while providing greater protection.

Testing is interaction plus verification. That’s it – you do something, and you make sure it works. You can perform those two parts manually or with automation. An automated test script still requires manual effort, though: someone needs to write code for those interactions and verifications. For web apps, verifications can be lengthy. Pages can have hundreds of elements, and teams constantly take risks when choosing which verifications to perform and which to ignore. Traditional assertions are also inadequate for testing visuals, like layout and colors. That’s lots of work for questionable protection.

There’s a better way: automated visual testing. Instead of writing several assertions explicitly, we can take visual snapshots of our pages and compare them over time to detect changes. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a snapshot is worth a thousand assertions. In this talk, I’ll show you how to do this type of visual testing with Applitools. We’ll automate a basic web UI test together using traditional techniques in Python, and then we’ll supercharge it with visual snapshots. We’ll see how Applitools Visual AI can pinpoint meaningful differences instead of insignificant noise. We’ll also see how to render those snapshots on any browser configuration we want to test without needing to rerun our tests in full. By the end of this talk, you’ll see how automated visual testing will revolutionize functional test automation!