Hi all,

This is something I was recently talking to Bjoern about,
and which I'm pretty sure came up at the GCC2013 too,
perhaps in the Tool Developer's BoF chat?:

Currently Galaxy Tools should have test data for their
functional tests, included in the Tool Shed repository
under a test-data folder. That is good.

Currently Galaxy Workflows do NOT support similar
functional tests and they should (i.e. they need
something very similar with a test-data folder and
configuration file giving the input/output files and
other input parameters). This might make sense
as part of any ongoing work to present a workflow
within Galaxy as a Tool?

Trello issue filed:

Neither Galaxy Tools nor Galaxy Workflows yet have
any support for "sample data", which might just be
larger examples then we already have for the tool's
functional tests. This could even be implemented
as  and extension to the existing <test> markup
where a test can be marked as also being sample

I am imaging that each tool (and workflow) should
have at least one sample input dataset (files and
parameters) with a description. These would be
shown via new GUI element in the Galaxy interface
to auto-populate the Galaxy Tool interface with those
sample input files (imported into the current history?)
and the associated parameter values - ready for the
user to modify if desired and then execute.

Ross brought this up sample data for tools back in
May 2010, and there is a relevant Trello issue filed:

In the short term, we can just resort to documenting
examples in the Tool's <help> text using URLs to
public datasets.

Here it would be nice if the workflows also supported
a similar <help> field to be shown to the user when
running a workflow:

Unless enhancing the workflow annotation with a
tool <help> like field is imminent, then for workflows
we are probably for the short term restricted to
documenting sample data in a README file which
would be visible on the Tool Shed, but not available
once the workflow is actually installed into a Galaxy

The current situation is clearly not ideal - what is
realistic to hope/aim for in the next Galaxy release?


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