Thursday, June 28, 2007

A Test suite for business rules

I mentioned in a previous posts that the rule validation in the interactive rule map (cause-effect graph between terms and rules) is part one of the rule validation.

In the image on the right (click to zoom) you see the second part that is currently being developed. Test cases that are created in the interactive rule map can be saved to a test suite. A test suite (a collection of test cases for business rules) can be executed in a batch process.

For every test record we compare the user defined expected value with the rules engine computed value. Any discrepancies are flagged with a red info, and the test record would be marked red to indicate a failure. Green test records have all computed values equal to the business users defined expected values.

In the output terms you have to indicate which term you want to set as a goal for the rules engine. One test suite can process multiple goals. But every test record can only have one goal defined.

Similar to the meta information on a business rule, a test record contains the meta information of who the author is, when it was created, a description field etc.

You can imagine that among business users a difference of opinion might exists what the expected outcome value must be for a particular situation. We can not say what is right or wrong withing a rule policy, but we can show there is a difference.

Finally, the test suite can be used perfectly for regression testing your rule policy and can give a good impact analysis what happens when you modify your rule policy.
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