[erlang-questions] Trace-Driven Development

Henning Diedrich <>
Wed Jun 6 02:40:55 CEST 2012


I think from the pyre, this must be salvaged as the actual point I was 
going for:

On 6/4/12 6:52 AM, Michael Turner wrote:
> I'm now
> doing unit testing on a module as I develop it further, based on
> collecting and filtering seq_trace results

Is this a common approach, who else does this and how?

Using self-written stuff based on seq_trace, or et_collector?

> I should make a decision: do I keep building ever more sophisticated
> match filtering on top of seq_trace, undoubtedly reinventing wheel
> after wheel, or do I bite the bullet and plunge into what Jayson
> Vantuyl describes as "hell"?

One Open Source loving word regarding the 'hell' quote:
> I'm hardly the only one who should be embarrassed:
>
> "Erlang tracing is a seething pile of pain that involves reasonably
> complex knowledge of clever ports, tracing return formats, and
> specialized tracing MatchSpecs (which are really their own special
> kind of hell). The tracing mechanism is very powerful indeed, but it
> can be hard to grasp."
>
> Obviously, that kind of statement has no place in the official
> documentation of a professional product.

Honest statements like the one you are citing may be the actual luxury 
and strong value of Open Source efforts, which are not directly a 
commercial product. Possible only because they /are/ not a product. For 
one user, fresh air like this only creates trust and allows to (even 
very precisely) set expectations and alertness to shortfalls in both 
documentation and package.

That is not to paint the situation rosy, it would be lovely if it was 
better. But I appreciate the honesty, very much.

Best,
Henning
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