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Test Driven Development: By Example

(A Kent Beck Signature Book)

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  2,885 Ratings  ·  129 Reviews
Follows two TDD projects from start to finish, illustrating techniques programmers can use to increase the quality of their work. The examples are followed by references to the featured TDD patterns and refactorings. This book emphasises on agile methods and fast development strategies.
Paperback, 216 pages
Published November 18th 2002 by Addison-Wesley Professional (first published January 1st 2002)
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Francis Fish
Apr 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This book has a simple purpose: show in clear and understandable language how to approach TDD. Nothing more or less, and he succeeds very well.

Other reviewers have commented that they were annoyed about how this book didn't cover mocks and stubs and a lot of the other artefacts of testing - that wasn't Beck's purpose, he wanted to show how it's done and then catalogue the patterns needed in order to make it work. While he covered mock and null objects he didn't go into the details because these
Erika RS
May 29, 2012 rated it liked it
This is one of those books that I would have rated more highly a few years ago. TDD is not a particularly complicated concept and, these days, it's not particularly new either. Thus, the explanations I've come across online[1] and the one book I've read on the topic[2] have been quite sufficient exposure, making reading another book on the topic superfluous.

That said, Beck's book was, in my opinion, better than Test-Driven Development: A Practical Guide by David Astels. Astels' book is not bad,
Ulas Tuerkmen
Oct 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
I should have read this book earlier. When the whole TDD thing exploded, the web was, for a while, plastered with blog posts and tutorials on the whys and hows of TDD and unit tests. Everyone agreed that automated testing was a great thing; the opinions differed only on when to write the tests, and what the units under test should be. I thought I had understood and soaked in the main tenets of TDD, and did not need to read this relatively small book.

So, what is TDD? It's a development method whe
Feb 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
Such a wonderfully written book on Test-Driven Development (TDD). It walks through several easy-to-follow examples, and then wraps up with a nice discussion of TDD and some of the patterns that show up during this style of development. This book is a breeze to read, and very enlightening. I'm so tired of ugly code that breaks all the time, so I was hoping to be persuaded that TDD really is the best way to "write clean code that works." This book definitely persuaded me.

The surprising thing was h
Baal Of
Aug 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
This is a good introduction to test driven development, and this book helped me better understand what TDD really is. In particular the points about breaking things down to small steps, refactoring, and always working quickly to a green bar were very helpful. I did find some weird problems with the python example, which might be due to the fact I decided to go with Python3, and the book used Python2. Specifically, I was working through the examples, and found that when I deliberately went off sc ...more
Mar 09, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: work
This is a different kind of programming book. It's a relatively fun book to read.

It's a good companion's to Fowler's Refactoring. For some reason, I'll always remember Beck from his 'coding smells' concept - it comes from his grandma saying "if it smells [bad:], change it" or something like that.

It too is non-intuitive at first and goes against a lot of learnings. But, all great concepts start out that way. It essentially tells you to write your tests first and (only then), write the smallest
Oct 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a future classic and exactly what you need to refine your test-first development skills. Even if you thought you were doing TDD before reading this book you may have been missing some extremely simple and yet powerful tricks Beck has up his sleeve and is happy to share. Try solving some simple problems TDD as you read it and you will know what to pay attention to as you read on.

On a side note the author shares his cheeky personality as he writes which makes reading even more fun.
David Workman
This fairly slim tome is overflowing with useful information from the 2 worked examples of real-world problems being solved by the author (Kent Beck, of XP and Smalltalk fame, among other things) using Test Driven Development.

The book starts with TDD being applied to the problem of doing multi-currency conversions with given exchange rates. Kent Beck does a chapter per test and associated refactoring, and this leads to extremely short chapters but where almost the entire chapter is useful infor
Vincent Nguyen
Mar 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The book has 3 Parts - You can jump to "Part 3: Patterns for Test Driven Development" to read without reading Part 1 and Part 2.

I read this book with a friend, he and I have few notes that can share for you guys:

- Many people think TDD is a way to test: You write tests first and write code later. I have to say: You're wrong - 100% wrong.

- TDD is a way that can help you improve your performance when working, TDD can help you become a better developer. TDD is for yourself, not for your team or com
John Norman
Feb 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I must have read this back when it came out because I remember some of the jokes. This is a fascinating book about TDD, esp. if you read it now, given the maturation of the development model. On p. 199 there is a tantalizing section on "Application" TDD, where in a paragraph Beck anticipates BDD -- and how hard BDD can be if you don't properly rope in stakeholders as collaborators. I don't think we've figured that one out yet.

The book is a weird mix. First there's a section where Beck uses TDD t
Stefan Teixeira
Jun 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book is definitely a must-read for those who want to study about TDD. The book is easy to read and, at the same time, full of extremely valuable theory and practice about Test Driven Development.
Renan Siravegna
Oct 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Uma boa introdução ao desenvolvimento orientado a testes, com um exemplo bem interessante e uma didática bem simples de entender, recomendado pra quem está iniciando.
Louise Douglas
Jul 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: paperback
As my first real dive into test driven development, this book was a great introduction into the practices and the habits that are involved. The one thing that I wish I had done when I started reading is actually trying to implement the examples that are in the book, as I think the practical side would have helped the examples sink in a little bit more.

Saying that, I learn really well from books, and I had no trouble following the code examples from one to another and having the changes written i
Alberto Romero
Jul 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book totally changed my way of seeing TDD.
Since the very beginning, the book tells you about the benefits of using TDD, and how awesome it is to split big problems into small chunks of tests, and the whole first chapter is an example of how to drive your design entirely by doing testing.
Without a doubt, the money example was awesome, and most of the take outs from each of the chapters are something we really need to write down to remember at the moment of writing tests.

Something I still kee
Claus Aranha
Mar 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
Concrete, Clear Intro to TDD for Newbies like me.

I've heard many social media connections raving about TDD before. Tests as documentation, they said, make sure your changes don't break your code, they said. But whenever I had some time to look for information on the topic, I could never find a concise tutorial or description that I could immediately apply to my own working framework. This book filled that hole quite nicely.

The first half of the book is two example cases, one in Java-ish, another
Aug 05, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: tech
I am very amused how much people loves this book. It describes approach to TDD, but from my perspective (after couple years of development practice) done in completely wrong way. In the first part we are observing how author wrote code and refactor its. With the new requirements he adds functionality. At the beginning he just copy the code, and than refactor. My experience tells: no way. In complicated projects the final result of the application will be application with duplication. Of course a ...more
Feb 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: programming
Reads as a workshop on TDD on several instances.
The book explains TDD step by step very well (it's in the title that it will be explained "By Example").

What I liked most about the book:
- the code examples; how TDD progresses, useful and working code is "extracted" and drives the design
- feels like a mentoring on TDD, not just a description on it but really the author transmits it's passion on TDD and invites you to join them on this way of structuring and thinking the activities of development
Dun Yang
Jul 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Having read a Java-specific TDD book and having the chance to try and apply it on small programming exercises, I find that the book showcases some important concepts and principles that one might not necessary be able to pick up from other books and articles. In particular, the following are valuable lessons that are new to me:
1. The rationale behind learning to take small steps in TDD -> it gives you the ability to choose to take smaller steps as and when we need it (solves the mystery behin
John Hearn
Oct 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: software
Inside-out TDD done properly and with humour.
Two takeaways from this book not found in a lot of other material:
1) A todo list of the stuff you've realised you'll need but haven't got to yet. Great for resisting the urge to start doing the first thing that comes into your mind. Another way of doing this is to apply the outside-in style of TDD where, in a way, your todo list is represented by your acceptance test.
2) Removing duplication (implicit or explicit) between your code and your test as a
Ilya Ivanov
Oct 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Great introduction to Test Driven Development (TDD). Kent wrote this book more than 15 years ago, but I think this book is still very relevant and covers lots of useful insights, techniques and patterns in working with TDD.

I've been working with TDD for quite some time and it was always challenging to apply TDD in front-end development. Especially for an existing project without any automated tests at all. Kent gave a bunch of approaches and mindsets on how to think about your craft. Third part
Romans Karpelcevs
Aug 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tech, non-fiction
"Why didn't I read it before?" was the main question in my head while finally reading this book.
With more than 80 highlights in my e-book version it turned out to be one of the most condensed and useful IT books I've read recently. Packed with phrases I can cite at programmer cocktail parties for months to come, it gives a great explanation with useful examples of the TDD approach, noting the tradeoffs and giving many tips and tricks to use when developing.

Recommending to any developer, either a
Wellington Pinheiro
Dec 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Esse é o livro mais clássico sobre TDD! Para aqueles que realmente levam a sério o código que escrevem, essa é uma leitura obrigatória. Essa é a segunda vez que leio o livro e, como em qualquer um desses livros clássicos, pude observar certos detalhes com um ponto de vista diferente de quando o li pela primeira vez. Isso é muito legal pois a gente percebe quanto detalhe e sutileza existem nessa quantidade finita de páginas. Muito recomendado!
Michał Kostrzewa
Oct 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Even if you are negatively opinionated about TDD, it's very useful to know different perspectives on common problems (kinda like knowing functional programming - you never see code the same way again). You will find lots of advice here regarding tests and testability even if you are not a TDD practicioner.
Ilyes Hachani
May 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great book, great writing style, and a wonderful content.
The examples provided really show how to use TDD to drive software development.
I just finished it and I am considering rereading it.
The book starts with an example in java then implements a simple xUnit in python making easier to understand how tests work.
Arthur Gavrichenko
Хочу прочитать еще, много полезных советов
Umang Bhatt
Nov 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Kent is undoubtedly a master when it comes to thoughts on programming. A must read for all developers. If this book does not make sense to you, then do wait for few years and come back again.
Oct 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great book but whole code of this book should have been written in one language. That is the only drawback of this book as for me.
Michael Webb
Oct 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
A little bit dated and treads much ground better covered in other books (Refactoring, Clean Code) but still an excellent practical guide to TDD.
Isidro López
A "classic" about the TDD technique.

A MUST read: even being 15 years old, there are some good advices and it helps you further reflect about it :-)
Colin P.
Mar 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Good intro to TDD, occasionally annoying prose and extreme Java though.
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Waters Software: Kent Beck: Test Driven Development By Example 1 1 May 08, 2013 03:08AM  
  • Growing Object-Oriented Software, Guided by Tests
  • xUnit Test Patterns: Refactoring Test Code
  • Refactoring to Patterns
  • Domain-Driven Design: Tackling Complexity in the Heart of Software
  • Refactoring: Improving the Design of Existing Code
  • Working Effectively with Legacy Code
  • Agile Software Development, Principles, Patterns, and Practices
  • Practices of an Agile Developer: Working in the Real World
  • The Art of Unit Testing: With Examples in .NET
  • The Productive Programmer
  • User Stories Applied: For Agile Software Development
  • Design Patterns: Elements of Reusable Object-Oriented Software
  • Beautiful Code: Leading Programmers Explain How They Think
  • Pragmatic Thinking and Learning: Refactor Your Wetware
  • Applying UML and Patterns: An Introduction to Object-Oriented Analysis and Design and Iterative Development
  • Seven Languages in Seven Weeks
  • Release It!: Design and Deploy Production-Ready Software (Pragmatic Programmers)
  • Continuous Delivery: Reliable Software Releases Through Build, Test, and Deployment Automation

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Other books in the series

A Kent Beck Signature Book (7 books)
  • Implementation Patterns
  • ATDD by Example: A Practical Guide to Acceptance Test-Driven Development
  • Growing Object-Oriented Software, Guided by Tests
  • User Stories Applied: For Agile Software Development
  • Implementing Lean Software Development: From Concept to Cash
  • Leading Lean Software Development: Results Are Not the Point
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