Doing a germination test is a great idea before planting seeds that you're not sure are still viable (able to grow). That may be the case because the seeds are old, or have been exposed to water, light, heat, insects or other conditions that aren't ideal. Germination tests give you a good idea of how resilient your seeds are, so that you can make a plan for how many of them to plant or whether it is worth planting them at all.
Like a lot of skills related to local food, seed saving is an old idea that's deservedly getting lots of new attention. Saving seeds from your home or community garden makes sense for a lot of reasons and we want to convince you to give it a try. People are starting to get excited, daydreaming about the growing season and perusing seed catalogues, and we recommend that you read up a bit on seed saving and then factor that into your garden plans and seed purchases this year.