I'm messing for a while with Blender sources, getting familiar with the code and trying to find an area I could be the most effective during the GSoC. I'd like to ask about the "Tests for Regressions" idea:

1. There are a list of areas to be tested. How they will be chosen?

Are there any usage statistics? Further development plans? From the most basic ones to the most complicated? Is it up to me to test e.g. modifiers first?

2. How tests should look like?

E.g. under /lib/tests/modifier_stack/ are .blend files just showing, how modifier is supposed to affect given mesh (e.g. curve_modifier.blend; which in fact is subsurf + curve combination) and the other ones preparing scene, applying modifier and calling validate() on resulting mesh (array_test.blend). There is also /blender/tests/python/bl_mesh_modifiers.py file, with a comment:

# Currently this script only generates images from different modifier
# combinations and does not validate they work correctly,
# this is because we don't get 1:1 match with bmesh.
# Later, we may have a way to check the results are valid.

I don't understand, what does it exactly mean "we don't get 1:1 match with bmesh", but this comment is from 2012, so I assume that's not true any more.

The goal of "Tests for Regressions" project is to actually check results, so... I've started writing a test for Array modifier, created an object, then another - expected one - and in test, I've applied the modifier and I've compared the result with the expected mesh using bpy.types.Mesh.unit_test_compare(), which, as I've seen, compares data like vertices, edges and so on of two meshes (I haven't found many uses of that method in tests).

Should a test in this project look like this?

3. Where they should be placed: .blend or .py?

I can create expected object using Python by giving vertices/joining primitives for some tests. They can be also, probably faster, created using GUI.

What's recommended?

Creating a .blend file is much easier and more convenient for reviewing what's happening in Blender, but it makes harder checking the actual code/scene details (like objects' positions, modifiers parameters) and searching for it (I haven't found any tool to grep a text inside .blend file; only blendfile.py, which as I see, can be used to do so with a not-so-little effort). Moreover, I think it's easier to organize tests in .py file. In .blend one idea is to use layers (?) to separate tests for different parameters (e.g. for array modifier I'd like to test merge option and constant offset separately).

4. How it will be evaluated, i.e. how much a participant is supposed to achieve by each evaluation?

Will it be set by number of tests/coverage (I've got no idea how to check it)? Is it up to me to set milestones with a mentor, basing on my intuition, how much time testing each area will take?

Łukasz Hryniuk
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