in reply to Does anybody write tests first?

Yes. I try to work that way as often as I can. By writing the tests I get to play with the API before I commit to anything in code -- in essence, I refactor the API using the tests as a "prototype".

The other great thing is that it forces oneself to be specific as to what one expects often makes the coding job simpler.

Plus, I get to check that the tests actually *fail* when the code doesn't exist. When the code already is there and you write a test and it passes, how do you know your tests is actually doing what you think? Do you go back and break your code to confirm your tests -- if you're like most people, probably not. But by writing the test first, you get to see it both fail and then succeed, which increases the robustness of the test as well as the code.

Where I tend to make exceptions:


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