Tim Anderson reported an awesome bug with HyperList version 2.0.  I wanted to jump right in there and start fixing but the main HyperList script is a bit complicated. So you need to be careful.  One of the ways I try to make sure that I don’t break existing codes, is to use FileMaker Unit Testing.  I also use unit tests to make sure that I have actually fixed the bug. In this video, I take a look at solving Tim’s bug using FileMaker Unit Testing. I wrote about this a while back, but I thought this would be a good opportunity to bring up the subject again.

FileMaker Unit Testing

FileMaker Unit Testing

English: British Army Signals Trials Unit testing cathode ray signals on White Nancy 1948

“Unit Testing” is a programming term.  It sounds scary but really its a rather simple concept. It just means that you write some code to examine another piece of code to make sure it is behaving properly.  Thats it!.  It gives you an automated way of testing the functionality of some code.  Once you have that in place, you can code away, running your tests periodically to make sure everything is on track.

In FileMaker, we typically write unit tests in scripts.  That tend to make the most sense, since you will likely want to log and report the results of these tests. But you could do it with custom functions or some other calculation if you needed to.

Collaborative Projects

Unit tests can really help projects like HyperList and ModularFileMaker.org modules in general.  If you find a bug in a module, sending a file with a unit test in place makes it much easier for the developer or maintainer of that module to find and fix the bug.  It really really helps.  In the video, I show some examples of how you might want to approach doing just that.

Thanks, Tim, for reporting the bug.