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Ideal, recommended document box height of tests

From: Gérard Talbot <css21testsuite@gtalbot.org>
Date: Fri, 16 Mar 2012 21:23:26 -0400
Message-ID: <76ef0bbebf7deaa6783c35a698de24d6.squirrel@ed-sh-cp3.entirelydigital.com>
To: "Public CSS test suite mailing list" <public-css-testsuite@w3.org>

2.4. Short

Tests should be very short (a paragraph or so) and certainly not require
scrolling on even the most modest of screens, unless the test is
specifically for scrolling or paginating behaviour.

CSS2.1 Test Case Authoring Guidelines

I have been notified today that automated checking of tests with
reftests is going to be able to "see" presence or absence of vertical
scrollbar and then consider a test to be FAILED if its
correspondent/associated/related reftest does NOT create a vertical
scrollbar (or even if the scrollbar thumb is not at the same vertical
position in test versus its reftest).


creates a document box height of approx 515px when maximized in a
1024x768 scr. res. therefore creating a vertical scrollbar

does NOT create a vertical scrollbar.

So, now, the rhetorical question of how short is "short" and how short
is "very short" has concrete, practical repercussions.

I believe that
CSS2.1 Test Case Authoring Guidelines, Section 2.4 Short
Test Format Guidelines
should formally encourage test authors to try to create tests which do
not create a document box height any taller than 400px (maximum), with
300px being ideal, recommended.

You see, testers should not have to scroll up and down (anymore than
they should) when checking tests in standalone tab pages.

Testers should not have to scroll up and down when checking tests within
the Test Harness.

And, most important, automated checking of tests with reftests should
not report test failure unneedlessly (false negative) just because the
document box is too tall.

If the document box height of a test has to be taller than 400px, then
be it! Otherwise, all the authoring guideline and test format guideline
should be saying is something like "Try to make the document box not
taller than 400px (as maximum); and 300px is better".

Any test that creates a taller than 400px document box is likely to
generate more work, calculation and care when creating/crafting its
associated reftest... instead of linking to another already-created

By the way, I am myself guilty of creating a dozen (or so) of tests
which may be taller than 400px or close to 400px. I'll update those

regards, Gérard
Contributions to the CSS 2.1 test suite:

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Received on Saturday, 17 March 2012 01:23:59 UTC

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