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Validate your Python software against specifications created with BDD style grammar.

Project description

Checkit is a tool for validating executable specifications created with BDD style grammar. It aims to:

  1. Enable you to define BDD style specifications in python code.
  2. Provide a simple tool for validating your specifications.

To this end, checkit uses nose to enable you to create specs with keywords like “Describe”, “it” and “should”. It also provides a “checkit” command that seemlessly integrates with nose (specifically the nosetests command) to validate your software against the specs you created.


  • encourages “specification by example” by promoting the use of appropriate grammar
  • uses customizable options to make nose discover and run your specs


The requirements for using checkit are auto-installed if you use pip or easy_install.


The easiest way to install checkit is with pip install checkit or with easy_install checkit. Alternatively, you may download the source package from PyPI, extract it and install it using python install.

What you get

When you install the package, the only tangible thing you get is the “checkit” command. It uses nose to discover and execute specifications using flexible matching rules so that you are not limited to using distracting unittest (test focused) constructs like “def test…” or name your files “test…py”.

The other non-tangible benefit you get is that you no longer have to subject yourself to the unnecessary cruft needed for unittest test cases. You can now create a spec like this:

> cat
class DescribeCoolThingy(object):

    def it_is_cool(self):

    def it_should_not_heat_up(self):

Or even:

> cat
class AwesomeDudeSpecs():

    def should_smile_often(self):

Finally, when you want to validate your software against the specs, simply run the command “checkit” in your project directory like so:

> checkit
Ran 3 tests in 0.006s


Since checkit is merely a wrapper around nose, it accepts all the parameters that nose tipically takes. For more information, run:

> checkit --help


I welcome any questions or feedback about bugs and suggestions on how to improve checkit. Let me know what you think about checkit. I am on twitter @RudyLattae . I appreciate constructive criticsms or high fives :)

Do you have suggestions for improvement? Then please create an issue with details of what you would like to see. I’ll take a look at it and work with you to either kill the idea or implement it.


0.3.2b (Oct 20, 2011)

  • Add support for “given” to provide context for extra narrow tech specs.

0.3.1b (Oct 17, 2011)

  • Remove support for “examples” and “features” - focus on specs.

0.2.3b (Oct 17, 2011)

  • Refactor options passed to nose in prep to make them configurable
  • Add feature definition example
  • Add tox config to test against py2.5-2.7

0.1.0a (Jan 24, 2011)

  • First public release
  • “checkit” command to validate specs

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