How Suite it is: Declarative XForms submission testing
Submission, the process of sending data to a server and dealing with the response, is probably the hardest part of XForms to implement, and certainly involves the XForms element with the most attributes. This is largely due to legacy: XForms was designed to work with existing standards, and HTTP submission was designed before XML existed: the data representations are several, and on occasion byzantine. Part of the process of producing a standard such as XForms is a test suite to check implementability of the specification. The original XForms test suite consisted of a large collection of XForms, one XForm per feature to be tested. These had to be run by hand, and the output inspected to determine if the test had passed. As a part of the XForms 2.0 effort, a new test suite is being designed and built. This tests features by introspection, without user intervention, so that the XForm itself can report if it has passed or not. Current work within the test suite is on submission. This paper gives an overview of how the test suite works, and discusses the issues involved with submission, the XForms approach to it, and how to go about introspecting something that has left the client before you can cast your eyes on it.