Web developers: New BrowserSwarm tool lets you spend less time testing, more time innovating

Sep 25, 2013

Say hello to BrowserSwarm, a tool that helps Web developers automate how they test their JavaScript projects across devices and browsers. Launched Thursday, BrowserSwarm is a partnership between Microsoft, Sauce Labs and the open source team of Append To.

Developers can use the tool to automate how they test frameworks and libraries across browsers. It’s powered through the cloud, allowing developers to save precious server resources as well as time not having to set up multiple browser or device testing environments.

Why is this important? Web frameworks and libraries are the building blocks of the Web, found in every developer’s toolbox. Hundreds of these new JavaScript projects are built by the open source community every year – sometimes in late-night hackathons and shared at places like JSConf or on GitHub – to simplify coding for common problems like the Web layout, user input, animations, game physics, even the process of detecting features in older versions of Internet Explorer. Few truly innovative experiences on the Web happen without some type of framework.

Similar to the problem of testing websites across various devices and browsers, framework authors must ensure that their output works well and performs reliably, so developers can have the confidence to adopt it for their sites. Most top JavaScript frameworks like jQuery, dojo, prototype and Modernizr – used by more than 70 percent of the top traffic websites worldwide – have enough resources to perform testing regularly. But what if you’re a startup building a new framework? Testing is probably the last (but necessary) thing you want to do. So – just as the Internet Explorer team announced modern.IE testing tools for developer sites – Microsoft is partnering on BrowserSwarm to help framework authors.

To find out how BrowserSwarm works, how to add your project to BrowserSwarm, and more, head over to the Exploring IE blog.

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Steve Clarke
Microsoft News Center Staff

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