Interoperability is maybe the single most important requirement for xAPI (xAPI) to succeed. And the most important step to interoperability is conformance.

But, How do you know that your system actually conforms to the definition of a Learning Record Store (LRS)? The same way as anything else. You test it.

It may not be as simple as testing whether you can charge your iPhone in a microwave (you can’t), but nothing good comes easily.

Yesterday, we submitted a (pretty large) pull request to ADL’s xAPI Conformance Test Repo. Pending review and merge, the ADL’s Repo will have a code base that can be used to test an LRS.

What does this mean?

It is not a complete conformance suite yet. It is a start to an LRS conformance test suite that can put xAPI on a path to a certification program. There is still plenty of work to be done. The goal is that the community reviews, fixes, and builds upon it from here.

Why is it important?

When it comes right down to it, we don’t know what we don’t know, which is why it’s important to test LRSs for every aspect of the xAPI specification. Even some of our systems failed in certain parts when we tested them. We expect other people to fail, too. But that underlies the need for a Conformance Test Suite— the ability to identify where there are issues. This contribution gets us one step closer to that.

So what’s next?

The community needs you! We know this isn’t near finished, but it’s a good start. If the pull request is merged, we are hopeful that there will be a significant amount of work done by the xAPI community and ADL. To get started now, check out the test suite in its current form, or review and comment on the code here.