CukeUp! 2013

Topics covered at #cukeup

Thursday, 4th April at Skills Matter, London

16 experts. will be speaking. Starts at 9:00 AM.


Want to catch up on the latest developments ideas, and best practices in Cucumberworld? Want to hear from the creator of Cucumber Aslak Hellesøy? We are proud to present the third annual CukeUp!, held at Skills Matter London.

Under Cucumber creator Aslak Hellesøy's expert guidance, we present a fast-paced day packed with 30-minute talks on everything Cucumber.

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If you'd like to join us and 100+ other developers passionate about Cucumber, BDD, TDD and more you can find more information about Cukeup 2014 on the #Cukeup webpage.

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Keynote: The Cucumber Ecosystem

Where are we now and how do we ensure that Cucumber scales for years to come?

Cucumber is 5 years old and has grown into a big ecosystem. In this keynote Aslak shares his vision for the future!

Aslak Hellesøy

Aslak Hellesøy is the creator of Cucumber and co-founder of Cucumber Limited. He is a co-author of The Cucumber Book and an early adopter of XP and BDD. Aslak works as a programmer, software architect, business owner and trainer in a variety of industries, including finance, telecom and retail.

Why your step definitions should be one-liners and other pro tips

Many teams are now carrying around the baggage of a few years' automation with Cucumber. As a travelling consultant, Matt gets to see the good, the bad and the ugly sides of all this experience. He's lived to tell the tale, and in this talk he'll share those tales with you.

You'll learn the pitfalls to avoid, and the tricks and general principles to keep your Cucumber test suites easy to maintain for the long game.

Matt Wynne

Matt is the author of The Cucumber Book, and in 2013 he cofounded Cucumber Limited with Aslak Hellesøy and Julien Biezemans. Their company was acquired by SmartBear in 2019 and he now works as a BDD Advocate with a mission to maximise the adoption of BDD practices in the software industry.

Examples, Examples, Examples

Talk about BDD and people often think about Given, When and Then. Mention Specification by Example and the focus shifts to tables. This session focuses on Specification by Example, showing the benefits of giving examples in tabular form for both collaboration and automation.

Expect to see real-world scenarios from a trading system, and hear how they were produced through collaboration between Business Analysts and Developers.You will also see how the examples were automated using the Tickspec library which includes a number of novel extensions to the Gherkin language"

Phil Trelford

Phil is an active member of the software development community, regularly attending and speaking at user groups and conferences, blogging and contributing to open source projects. He is a co-organizer of the London F# User Group and a founding member of the F# Foundation.

Productive testing with Cucumber and JetBrains IDEs

With the number of your Cucumber tests increasing you need more and more time to find a step definition usages or look up where they are placed in your code.

In this talk Andrey shows how tools save time while working with Cucumber and how code analysis routine works in JetBrains products.

Andrey Vokin

Andrey Vokin is a Java developer at JetBrains. He has master degree in computer science. Andrey is responsible for integration of Cucumber and CoffeeScript in IDEs from JetBrains.

Working in the Cucumber World

At the centre of Cucumber's implementation is the `world` construct. In this talk Andrew explores this structure, and in particular the naming of it.

Andrew shows how thinking about writing Cucumber features and step definitions is about creating a world that can help produce a set of step definitions that makes working with Cucumber simpler and more productive.

Andrew Premdas

Andrew Premdas been developing software for about 20 years now, working with C, Delphi, Java and now mostly Ruby. His main focus is BDD using Cucumber. Andrew is a member of the Cucumber core team, maintains the Cucumber textmate bundle and is a mode


In this presentation Marcus introduces ways to do doing Specification by example on the .NET platform by recreating a demonstration from the Cucumber book.

Ever since he first heard about Cucumber he always felt that those Ruby-folks has a nicer set-up around Cucumber and it's tools . This talk is a veritable OSS-fest with SpecFlow, Nancy and Pickles.

Marcus Hammarberg

Marcus Hammarberg is a consultant and contractor working in Stockholm, Sweden. He was bitten by the BDD/Specification by example bug about four years ago, first reading the famous Dan North introduction.

Hands-on introduction to Cucumber.js

Julien Biezemans, author of Cucumber.js and Matt Wynne, a long-standing Cucumber core team member will facilitate a short hands-on workshop during which you'll get the opportunity to understand the basic concepts, conventions and syntax to get started with Cucumber in a pure JavaScript environment.

Because of the universal nature of JavaScript, Cucumber.js is getting attention from people coming from very different backgrounds. All you need is a laptop capable of connecting to a wireless network and a modern browser installed.

Julien Biezemans

Julien is a fervent BDDer who loves writing code, building well-crafted conducive software as well as sharing knowledge and techniques with other passionate people.

Matt Wynne

Matt is the author of The Cucumber Book, and in 2013 he cofounded Cucumber Limited with Aslak Hellesøy and Julien Biezemans. Their company was acquired by SmartBear in 2019 and he now works as a BDD Advocate with a mission to maximise the adoption of BDD practices in the software industry.

Cross-platform and End-To-End BDD for Mobile

Many companies are developing for multiple platforms: Android phone and tablet, iPhone, iPad, and (responsive) Web. In many cases, the business requirements and specifications are the same, or very similar across platforms. This leads naturally to questions like: how can we ensure quality and consistency across platforms? how can we minimize cost of quality assurance and automated testing? BDD provides a good framework for providing answers to such questions.

This talk will demo an approach to cross-platform BDD using Cucumber and Calabash. We will focus on reusing more than just features across platforms! We'll also touch upon topics such as end-to-end testing and monitoring.

Finally, this talk will also provide an overview of Calabash: which brings Cucumber to Mobile native and hybrid apps.

Karl Krukow

Karl Krukow is Technical Lead on Xamarin Test Cloud, an innovative cloud-based service that provides managed access to more than a thousand mobile devices for the purpose of mobile quality assurance.


This talk describes how to apply the Test Data Builder Pattern to Cucumber-JVM for creating test data on-demand without direct database manipulation.

This can be achieved by using the web services exposed by the application under test to create the data and the pattern to abstract the complexities of interacting with the web services for creating data.

Alan Parkinson

Alan is CEO and Co-founder of Hindsight Software, a start-up focused on supporting BDD in the Enterprise. Over the last 14 years Alan's passion has switched from just writing code to how we deliver high quality software systems as a team. He is a passionate believer in finding talented engineers and works with a “Do Tank” the New Engineering Foundation to influence the UK government and educational bodies on STEMs education.


This talk explores Michael's experience working on projects at an international social media agency.

He discusses a number of cucumber-related topics, including: tools, facebook nuances, integration testing for open graph actions, deliberate discovery and workflow shortcuts

Michael Nacos

Michael Nacos enjoys playing with computers but gets bored easily. He has worked as an IT trainer, web developer, linux sysadmin, database developer, email engineer, cloud architect and tech lead. These days he helps companies build products and teams, using open source tools to deliver progressive web and mobile experiences that hit the mark.

The Impersonator Pattern

Writing cukes describing the real business value a feature is providing is hard. We end up having an horrendous amount of step definitions that muddle the real value the feature is providing; cluttered with interactions with the UI.

This talk describes a different approach to writing cukes following a pattern that has evolved from working on several customer project; The Impersonator Pattern.

With this approach to defining your step definitions you will have clearer steps in your cukes. You will be able to see in "one go" what a certain type of user can do in the application you are describing and benefit from the clarity of the cukes.

Enrique Comba Riepenhausen

Sofware Craftsman, co-founder of path11. Enrique has been crafting software for businesses since 1995 and has worked all over the world, building systems and leading teams in industries like artificial intelligence, gaming, insurance, telecoms, tradi

One Testing Story from JetBrains

Why did we choose Cucumber? What difficulties have we been facing with and how did we solve them? Meet several examples with some interesting details on how we use Cucumber tests in IntelliJ-based products.

This talk is about the practical testing experience with Cucumber in JetBrains IntelliJ IDEA and RubyMine projects.

Kirill Likhodedov

Kirill Likhodedov is a senior Java developer at JetBrains. He has a master degree in computer science. For the last 3 years he has been developing and supporting Git integration and Diff/Merge subsystems in IntelliJ-based products.

Don't you trust me? (a technical approach to building trust and consensus)

Seb Rose discusses an approach that he has been experimenting with using Cucumber's tagged hooks to control the amount of application stack that a scenario exercises.

In many legacy organisations there's a tension between the desires of the three amigos

  • business stakeholders can't validate assumptions unless they're written in business domain terms
  • testers would ideally test everything end to end (vertically)
  • developers respond that the testing pyramid encourages us to have more unit tests than integration or end-to-end tests

It is often recommended that some tests that start off as scenarios get pushed 'down' into unit tests to keep the execution time under control and constrain the maintenance burden of the feature suite. The trouble with this is that even if the business folk and the testers trusted the developer's unit tests implicitly (which they often don't ;-) there's still the issue of visibility. We no longer have one complete, generally consumable, source living documentation.

Additionally, we don't want to pollute our scenarios with details about our step definition implementation (such as whether we're exercising an isolated component or entire system end-2-end). Which is exactly what we'd like to do in some circumstances to minimise the runtime of our feature suite.

An approach that he has been experimenting with uses Cucumber's tagged hooks to control the amount of application stack that a scenario exercises. This lets us tailor our execution context depending on the runtime of the feature suite and the amount of trust the team has to spare. In the limit, this allows us (where it makes sense) to expose some of our unit tests as scenarios - keeping our living documentation complete.

The cost, of course, is added complexity.

Seb Rose

Consultant, coach, trainer, analyst and developer for over 30 years. Seb has been involved in the full development lifecycle with experience that ranges from Architecture to Support, from BASIC to Ruby. He’s a partner in Cucumber Limited, who help teams adopt and refine their agile practices, with a particular focus on collaboration and automated testing.

Testing realtime-web apps with Cucumber.js

This session covers how developers can utilise Cucumber.js to test a realtime-web application, drawing on the experiences and lessons learnt in testing Dashku.com.

Paul shares tools and tips with the audience, shedding light on how they can bring the wonderful world of Cucumber to the realtime-web.

Paul Jensen

Paul is a developer at Axisto Media. He previously worked at New Bamboo and AOL, and is a core contributor to the SocketStream web framework.

Towards Automatic Scenario Generation Based on Uncovered Code

Following the behavior driven development (BDD) methodology thoroughly, one would expect 100% code coverage, since code is only written to make the tests pass. Based on this assumption Melanie and Mathias have investigated BDD-driven projects and found out that this is not the case.

As a consequence, they propose a feature to Cucumber that generates new scenarios based on uncovered code. Applying this feature continuously eventually results in fully covered implementation.

The material presented in the talk was published in M. Diepenbeck, M. Soeken, D. Große and R. Drechsler. Towards Automatic Scenario Generation from Coverage Information, AST, 2013

Mathias Soeken

Mathias Soeken is working on formal verification of UML/OCL models used as specification in the design of embedded systems as well as on reversible logic and quantum computation.

Melanie Diepenbeck

Melanie Diepenbeck is currently pursuing her PhD degree on "Behaviour Driven Development for System Design" at the University of Bremen in the Graduate School System Design (SyDe) and in the Group for Computer Architecture headed by Prof. Dr. Rolf Drechsler.


A ParkBench Panel discussion, to discuss ideas, stuff learnt during the morning and stuff you may like to hear more about.

Participants were actively encouraged to join the panel to express their opinion and share experiences!


Skills Matter

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