AJAX testing in iTest2

By mark
Web 2.0 sites such as GMail grow rapidly, which brings big challenges to web test automation. Different from traditional web sites with "synchronous request/response model", new web sites handle requests asynchronously using AJAX. For example, in GMail, clicking 'Send' button does not land you on 'Email Sent' page, instead you see a '_Sending..._' banner appears and replaced with '_Email sent successfully_' later. The difficulty of testing AJAX web sites are not knowing when the request is processed and verify dynamic updated page contents. The approach used iTest2 is simple, after AJAX call, keep trying next operation with specific time. During that time frame, operation error will be ignored (and try again after interval),
    # try up to 10 seconds, waiting receipt date 'showing up'
    try(10) { label_with_id("date").should == today }

    # try up to 60 seconds every 10 seconds.
    try (60, 10) { click_button('Next') }
To assert specific HTML element is shown or hidden
    assert_hidden(:div, "info")  #
    is hidden
    assert_visible(:div, "info")
To assert specific HTMl element is added or removed in a web page
    assert_exists("label", "email_sent") #