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Automation testing is the process of writing code which tests the application automatically without requiring any human intervention and produced results can be analyzed for further testing or reporting purpose which further reduces testing efforts and helpful in delivering quality software faster and more affordable. It initially requires a cost to develop automation test suite but helps in delivering better quality software with less effort over a period of time as less manpower will be required to perform repetitive tasks.
Although numerous organizations are using automation testing to a great extent, yet still enormously depend on manual testing. This is due to a lack of knowledge of the benefits of automation testing in the software development process. There is a set of pre-defined test cases which is executed deliberately manually. The outcome of each test case is then compared with the expected behavior and reporting the results or discrepancies if found.
Repetitive testing or repeating a set of test case execution is very usual in continuous delivery development models and thus software is prone to errors in such environment. Testing can become a tedious task when it comes to cross-platform or cross browser testing. Performing one thing over and over again for different operating systems not only consumes a lot of time but also shifts the focus from the actual functionality to be delivered; especially when deadlines are tight. Hence, it is crucial that automation testing should be done in almost every organization to save time and to deliver quality software.
There are many tools available in the market for this purpose but “Selenium” stands out of all these when it comes to web automation testing. Now, when we have such a powerful tool which is open source and large community support spanning many operating systems, browsers and languages; then the question arises: Which language it should be used with? As already mentioned, selenium is compatible with numerous languages namely; Perl, Ruby, C#, Java, Python and so on. In the rest of the article, let’s have a look at why using “Java” with Selenium web driver is at more advantageous over “Python” with the same for your organization and the benefits it can bring.
First, let’s discuss Selenium with Python
Python is a high-level language which is interpreted and simple to understand. It is an open source language known for its flexibility and extensive libraries.
Java is the most widely used and oldest programming language due to its robust nature. It is platform independent which mean program written for windows will also run for other types of the operating system. It has a very large supporting community which secures its position on the top in the future as well.
The phrase “dynamically typed” means that Python performs type checking at runtime, while statically typed languages like Java perform type checking at compile time. Python can compile even if program contains errors due to its dynamic nature and would result in the unsuccessful execution of the script. On the flip side, Java has JIT compiler, which shows errors at compile time only saving the user’s extra effort of recognizing errors at an early stage of development.
Debugging: Java is statically typed which data types of variables should be declared before using them, while Python does not. Python is more flexible and can save you time and space when running scripts. However, it can cause issues at runtime.
Performance: Choosing a language narrows down to what we are trying to achieve with the code. Performance is not always the parameter, but it is always a basic metric to decide the capability of any technology. Code optimization and virtual machine execution make Java more efficient when it comes to performance speed.
Changing Old Systems: Python is more effective than java when it comes to adapting legacy systems. The existing system can be changed easily using python language due to its embeddable capabilities. Hence, one need not to fully rewrite and revamp the system like it needs to be done for Java.
As far as choosing one language is concerned, both have their pros and cons. Automation with java is more predictable and reliable due to the language’s static type system, which makes automated refactored.
On the other hand, Python’s dynamic system relies on brevity, fluidity, and experimentation in code, giving it more versatility than Java’s rigid style. Python has also been adapting to automated testing in modern development, but this happens more frequently in integration instead of unit testing.
JVM code can be JIT-compiled efficiently, using a fast compiler. But the same would be hard for Python, because of its dynamically typed nature. JVM translates to a fairly low level and straightforward native code, but for the dynamic languages, you’d have to generate dynamic dispatch for literally all the basic operations and for all the method calls. This dynamic dispatch is the primary hindrance for python to be faster than java.
To sum up, it is obvious from the above arguments that using Selenium with Java is preferred by more than 80% of professionals but it also doesn’t mean that learning Selenium with Python is not useful. Selecting the programming languages depends on where you going to use.
We, at BugRaptors, have developed our own automation framework using java language and delivered many automation projects using the same language which has satisfied numerous clients’ requirements and produced high-quality software.