According to german Duden conformance means 'in agreement, accordant' (from Late Latin conformitas - similarity). Any check on compliance of a test object with its specification can therefore be regarded as a conformance test. A conformance test has become established in the field of networked systems. In networked systems components from different manufacturers work together and only error-free communication under all conditions enables such interoperability.
Two points are of major importance in the implementation of conformance testing:
- A conformance test 'can just be as good as the specification of the test object': if the specification is incorrect or has gaps, the statements that are derived from the test results are inaccurate or incomplete as a consequence of this.
- A conformance test 'can only be as good as its test specification': in the test specification, the test cases are defined, which are performed for a complete conformance test. A good test specification contains the definition of test cases with which all the key requirements of a test object are tested. As the number of possible test cases, however, goes to infinity, the selection of the relevant test cases is of the utmost importance.
We are aware of the importance of these issues and take appropriate solutions as a basis for our work.
Much background information on the philosophy of testing can also be found in the book by Prof. Dr. Wolfhard Lawrenz (ed) CAN System Engineering. More than 40 experts discuss the topic CAN and thereby also the issue of testability of all sides. The book is published in German under the title CAN. Controller Area Network: Fundamentals, Design, applications, test equipment.