Selenium Test Automation Tool | The What and the Why
What is that? Do you hear it? I hear automation bells ringing? Yes it is the start of a new chapter in our life peeps! Selenium Test Automation tool, the one world’s been talking about. What is it about it, huh? What makes it so special? Let’s find out.
The idea of automation is so exciting, I can’t wait to tell you all about it. Just look at an automation tool as something that stops you from doing painful work. Like real life robots that do things mechanically to help you out, an automation tool is a software robot that just lurks inside your computer. It makes all those painful chores effortless. Isn’t that a hoot?
If I don’t tell you about how good it is and jump in right on “the how”, you might yawn and not love it for its brilliant contribution to the world of lazy. After all it is all about falling in love. If you don’t, then there’s no point in going ahead.
What is Selenium Software
I know the what and the why are terrible questions to begin a topic with. That’s when hands go down. But hey! when you are learning something new, you have to know what you are learning. Ain’t that right?
To explain that I will try (I can only try) to make you visualize a real life scenario. Let’s just say you are trying to order a mobile phone from an online shopping website. Let’s say Amazon for instance. Now the manufacturers are really low on the number of products, and they come up with a batch of 10 at irregular intervals. Also, they don’t notify the users whenever they have stuff to sell, because they know the fan base is a solid base.
Now this mobile is really good! It’s worth your time and effort. So you come visit this website every day in hopes to see if you can land one. But unfortunately it is turning out to be a real pain in the ass. Since it’s been months and still there hasn’t come a time wherein luck has favoured you. What do you do then? Keep doing what you have been doing religiously? Or act smart and let a robot come in to help?
Well, Selenium Test Automation Tool is that robot, ladies and gentleman. Let it come to the rescue. The Selenium Software will take reins of doing all the scouring in its own hands. All you need to do is write a script that makes Selenium understand what needs to be done. And once you do that and execute it in real life scenario it will do the job automatically, every day, till it bags your elusive mobile.
So Selenium is basically an automation tool that allows you to avoid doing long and tedious jobs thereby saving you tons of time and effort.
The world is turning towards robots. Why we be left behind?
Why Selenium Test Automation Tool
This brings us to the next section – why Selenium, when there are thousands of other automation tools available in the market. There are so many reasons to begin with:
- Free: The top reason has to be this. When you don’t have to look into your coin jingling pockets to see how much you can spare for a testing tool. Well isn’t that an adrenaline rush?
- Wide Popularity: I am sure you have come across the name a lot of times before, if you are somehow vaguely related to the software industry. Big companies like Google and Facebook are using it. Heck! Doesn’t it make it sound important? So it’s got its name and fame in the testing niche.
- Web Browser Testing: In a world obsessed with websites, where the need of the hour is to test a scenario online, using Selenium Test Automation can be instantly rewarding. Selenium tool does that like a walk in the park, whistling.
- Open Source: The meaning of Open Source is that you can use Selenium Test Automation as per your requirement, change it as per your will, and tweak it to suit your project, and then rebuild it giving it your name.
- Awesome WebDriver: A Webdriver is nothing but a framework that allows you to execute whatever you have tested against different browsers like Firefox, Chrome, Safari etc. Selenium WebDriver is believed to be the best.
- Cross Platform Workability: It can work anywhere, almost on all Operating Systems like Linux, Windows, etc. which many software automation testing tools can’t.
Another of those reasons that I can imagine is what if you get stuck at some point? Selenium’s popularity is such that help is always a mere Google search away. Then there are people, forums who are always willing to help you out with your puzzle. Isn’t that a big load off? If you were stuck in a pickle with a tool only few knew about, wouldn’t you be stuck there like, I don’t know, forever?
What do you need to know before learning Selenium?
Just one language, I would say. But you don’t need to be an expert, because learning doesn’t happen in a day. You become experts whilst tackling through everyday problems. Hopefully we are clear on that!
I pick Java.
You know the reason I prefer Java to others for learning Selenium is because hey! at least I know something in that precinct.
Don’t worry if you don’t know a language. I have made you some really easy tutorials to help you bring up to speed with Java.
Since I am going to proceed with Java for learning Selenium I would say you do the same. After all it is walking hand in hand that is important so that you don’t get left behind. Eww! Your hands are sweaty!
Limitations of Selenium
As we have seen there are tons of advantages that Selenium brings to the table, but there are also certain limitations where Selenium takes the back seat. These limitations have been mentioned below:
- Cannot automate Windows Applications
- Cannot read images (Workaround OCR libraries)
- Bar Code, pie charts, and graphs cannot be read.
- OTP from mobile cannot be automated.
Let’s not worry about the limitations of Selenium as of now. We will try to overcome some of these all by ourselves. But hopefully the Selenium team might come with a solution soon, and we don’t have to worry about it at all.