Web browser makers Google, Microsoft, Apple, and Mozilla have forged a cross-browser benchmark initiative, called Interop 2022, intended to address interoperability pain points on the web platform.
The initiative has produced a public metric to assess progress toward fixing browser interoperability issues. Also participating in the initiative, which was announced March 3, are web consulting firm Bocoup and software consultant Igalia.
Interop 2022 has three investigative areas with spans editing, contentEditable, and execCommand, alongside pointer and mouse events plus viewport measurement.
In addition, the initiative has 10 new focus areas which covers cascade layers, colour spaces and functions, containment, dialog element and forms, as well as scrolling, sub-grid, typography and encodings, viewport units and web compatibility.
These 10 new areas join five areas adopted from Google and Microsoft’s previous Compat 21 effort:
- Aspect ratio
- Sticky positioning
Persons interested in participating can follow instructions at the Interop 2022 dashboard.
Mozilla said that the web developer feedback and end user bug reports it has collected point to two principal kinds of interoperability problems: Problems where there was a relatively clear and accepted standard, but where implementations were buggy or incomplete, and problems where the standard was missing, unclear, or does not match the behavior depended on by sites.
Problems in the former category, called “focus areas,” can be addressed through web-platform-tests that ensure web standards are implemented consistently across browsers. Problems in the latter category, called “investigate areas,” will have to be addressed through investigation and measurement against more qualitative goals.
For the latter, it’s not possible to simply write tests because it’s not clear what’s necessary to reach interoperability. These “unknown unknowns” turn out to be extremely common sources of developer and user frustration, Mozilla said.