Testing your code is a really good idea! While Acton's type system allows interfaces to be precisely defined, it is imperative that the behavior of a function or actor is tested!

Test functions are automatically discovered by the compiler. Run tests with acton test or acton test perf (for more accurately measuring performance). Tests will be automatically from the project source. Import the testing module and name your functions starting with _test. The type signature should match the test intended test category. Use the assertion functions available in the testing module. Here is a simple unit test:


import testing

def _test_simple():
    testing.assertEqual(1, 1)


acton test


Building project in /home/user/foo
  Compiling example.act for release
   Finished compilation in   0.016 s
  Final compilation step
   Finished final compilation step in   0.437 s

Tests - module example:
  simple:                OK: 1523 runs in 50.001ms

All 1 tests passed (0.604s)

There are 4 kinds of tests

  • unit tests
    • small simple tests of pure functions
  • synchronous actor tests
    • involving one or more actors, returning results synchronously
  • asynchronous actor tests
    • involving actors but use asynchronous callbacks for return values
  • environment tests
    • similar to async actor test in that a callback is used for the return value
    • these tests have access to the full environment via the env argument and can thus communicate with the outside world
      • this is a source of non-determinism so be mindful of this and try to avoid non-deterministic functions to the largest degree possible

When possible, strive to use unit tests rather than actor based tests and strive to avoid env tests.