A new life for WP Test

WP Test is a micro-site previously run by Michael Novotny, initially with the aim of providing theme unit test data for WordPress sites. It was one of the first efforts of its kind, and is still quite popular. It’s home is WPTest.io, and thankfully that trendy tld is still trendy.

Founded in 2013, WP Test hasn’t had too many updates since 2014. It’s still very useful data that you can download and import to your development site, and use the data to test all the weird content people might throw at your theme. But it needed a new home and some new attention, as Michael isn’t focusing as much on WordPress these days.

I acquired WP Test from Michael last week. Acquired is a strong word. He was ready to hand it over to someone, I was connected to him from my friend Tom McFarlin. I paid him $100 for his time to help me transition the site, plus the re-registration cost of the domain during transfer. So WP Test is now my play-toy and I think it’s a great fit for Post Status.

I have a lot of ideas for updating current test data, and adding many new awesome tests for folks to take advantage of. If you visit WPTest.io you’ll notice a very Post Status-esque orange and blue color scheme that was obviously a priority.

In the months to come, I’ll be updating current theme test data to be up to date. There are several tickets that are good candidates for new data, like showing samples of WordPress’s new oEmbed features, for example.

I also have several broad ideas for tests:

  • More methods to import data, and show them prominently. Currently there’s a standard XML format, and a not-perfect WP CLI option. I want to ensure folks can reliably get test data into their installs.
  • Not just full on unit tests with the “kitchen sink”, but also more catered tests for certain types of websites (business sites, blogs, etc) that help give baseline content for use during the development process, not just for use during the testing process.
  • Plugin specific data: WooCommerce, EDD, Gravity Forms, BuddyPress, etc. It’s a multisite install, and I envision being able to spin up installs that allow me to create demo sites and downloadable data for many prominent plugins. Also, who doesn’t love running loads of complicated plugins on a single Multisite install? 🙂
  • Beyond “theme” unit tests. It’s called WP Test, not just WP Theme Test. The world is my oyster, and I want to explore other helpful testing tools for public consumption.

Comparing to the “official” theme unit tests

When WP Test came out in 2013, there were already some theme unit tests available, but WP Test went beyond that data, and some of it was in fact ported back to the official tests to make them more thorough.

The official data is pretty .org/.com centric, and for distributed themes only. That’s good, and WP Test will continue to have data for that setup. But the official test data is now somewhat out of date too. Basically, I want to keep pushing their buttons to improve, and I want to explore some options for testing that would be more difficult for them in an official capacity (see testing ideas for thirty party tools above).

A lot of developers — distributed theme developers and otherwise — use WP Test or the official test data when making WordPress-centric software. That test data should be as good and thorough as possible. I want to help that happen, both for default WordPress data and lots of other types.

A bright future

I see a bright future for WP Test and I’m excited to have it under the Post Status umbrella. I am tentatively using the term “Post Status Labs” for this and… future… micro-sites where fun stuff can happen.

Check out WPTest.io, the brand new Post Status Github organization (which only houses the WP Test repo for now, but more is coming), and feel free to ask any questions you have in Slack.