Refactoring Cucumber Features

I was inspired by this post (You’re Cuking It Wrong) to re-look at some feature specs to see if I could improve them.

I went from here:

Feature: Season Management
...
Scenario: Create a Season
  Given an organization like "My YMCA"
  When I add a season like "Summer Basketball" for "My YMCA" from "1 May" to "31 August"
  Then I should see the "Summer Basketball" season for "My YMCA" in a list of the organization's seasons

Scenario: Add a Registration Setup
  Given the "Summer Basketball" season for "My YMCA"
  When I add a setup like "Summer Signup" open from "1 April" to "30 April"
  Then I should see "Summer Signup" under the "Summer Basketball" season

to here:

Scenario: Create a Season
  Given an organization like "My YMCA"
  When I add "My Season" season
  Then I should see the "My Season" season

Scenario: Add a Registration Setup
  Given the "My Season" season for "My YMCA"
  When I add a setup like "My Season Signup"
  Then I should be able to signup under "My Season"

This also led to improvements in the steps. For example, by getting rid of the unnecessary dates, I also removed some unintended “brittleness.” As an example, this:

When /^I add a season like "([^"]*)" for "([^"]*)" from "([^"]*)" to "([^"]*)"$/ do |season, org, from, to|
  visit organizations_path
  click_link org
  click_link "New Season"
  fill_in "Name" , :with => season
  fill_in "season_starts_at" , :with => from
  fill_in "season_ends_at" , :with => to
  click_button "Create"
end

to:

When /^I add "([^"]*)" season$/ do |season|
  visit organizations_path
  click_link @org.name # Created in a prior scenario, no need to pass in
  from = Time.now      # Create more appropriate from/to values
  to = from + 120*24.hours
  click_link "New Season"
  fill_in "Name" , :with => season
  fill_in "season_starts_at" , :with => from
  fill_in "season_ends_at" , :with => to
  click_button "Create"
end

Subtle, maybe, but certainly more clear and less likely to need attention if/when the solution changes.

Leave a Reply