Search Content

Featured Content

WhitePapers


How to Buy a Phone System

Considering a new phone system for your business? The Phone System Buyer's Guide from VoIP-News provides you with all of the information you need to make a more informed decision. The Guide helps you...Read More


Which CMS Is Right For Me?

If you're wondering which CMS is the right one for your organization, this comprehensive guide will take you through the various options available, detailing the pros and cons of each. Download...Read More


Sales Force Automation Comparison Guide

Businesses of all sizes can benefit by automating all aspects of their sales processes with an SFA (Sales Force Automation) solution. But due to the sheer number of features that most SFA solutions...Read More


Oracle Magazine

Oracle Magazine contains technology strategy articles, sample code, tips, Oracle and partner news, how to articles for developers and DBAs, and more. Oracle (NASDAQ: ORCL) is the world's largest...Read More




View All Whitepapers

Quick and Dirty (and Cheap) Browser Testing

Adaptive Path is a pretty homogeneous company, technologically speaking. We’re a 100% Mac shop. Some of us fire up Parallels to create a Visio document or to play with Expressions, but this is a rarity. As a developer this limits my ability put a page design through it’s paces on disparate platforms and web browsers. Also, we only have a limited need for browser testing. Many of our projects don’t require us to deliver production-level code to a client. It doesn’t make financial sense to spend a lot of time and money setting up a lab and staffing a QA team for browser testing. This is why I love Browsershots.

Browsershots is a automated service that will take screenshots of your site on various browsers. You start a request by feeding the site a URL. That request is distributed amongst a network of volunteer computers each of which is running one or more operating system and browser combination. Sit back and wait for your job to move it’s way through the queue and return your screenshots. I submitted the uxweek.com homepage to 55 browsers and it took about 1 hour to return all of them.

What did I find out? Well, I have a little bit of tweaking if I want IE 5.5 on Windows 2000 to look perfect and something called ELinks on FreeBSD doesn’t like the site at all:

As if the FREE service was great enough on it’s own, the software that powers Browsershots is open source so you can create your own distributed testing environment. Why would you go through the effort? Maybe you have super-secret content that you’d like to keep behind a corporate firewall. Maybe you have the expertise and demand for your own dedicated testing lab. Whatever the rationale, it’s great that the site author was willing to release the source code.

What’s Browsershots NOT good for? Because of the queue nature of the service, it doesn’t work well for real-time trial and error. You would need enormous patience to make a one-line change in your CSS and wait to get a screenshot back only to find that the change didn’t have the effect desired. For the same reason, you won’t want to count on Browsershots for testing pages right after they go live. It just takes to long. Use the service for the occasional testing of your design on an enormous number of platforms when you have the time to wait.

Who’s using Browsershots right now? Take a look at their recent screenshots page.


Related CRM Storage Articles

Address Data Providers Integrate to Salesforce


In Australia, the Postal Service can supply a data file or xml integration of all combinations of City, Zip Code and State. I would assume that this is available in other countries also....

Read more about Address Data Providers Integrate to Salesforce...

And now also Tweeting....


Had I been a venture capitalist a few years back, and, had I entertained a pitch from the folks looking to develop Twitter, then here’s what I would have said (choking back tears of laughter): ‘OK, so let me get this straight, you want to develop...

Read more about And now also Tweeting.......