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Opinion: Do web standards matter?

 
 
Sugapablo
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      03-26-2005
Just out of curiosity, while checking on a site I was working on, I
decided to throw a couple of the web's most popular URLs into the W3C
Markup Validator.

Out of microsoft.com, google.com, amazon.com, yahoo.com, aol.com, and
mozilla.org, only Mozilla's site came back "Valid HTML".

So if all these places, with their teams of web developers don't seem to
care, should the rest of us small time web devs concern ourselves with
standards? I do, but sometimes I feel it's a wasted effort. What do yinz
think?

P.S. Slashdot returned a 403 Forbidden to the validator but when I saved
the homepage locally, it failed too.


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[ http://www.2ra.org <--political | http://www.subuse.net <--discuss ]

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Carolyn Marenger
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      03-26-2005
On Sat, 26 Mar 2005 08:01:30 -0500, Sugapablo wrote:

> Just out of curiosity, while checking on a site I was working on, I
> decided to throw a couple of the web's most popular URLs into the W3C
> Markup Validator.
>
> Out of microsoft.com, google.com, amazon.com, yahoo.com, aol.com, and
> mozilla.org, only Mozilla's site came back "Valid HTML".
>
> So if all these places, with their teams of web developers don't seem to
> care, should the rest of us small time web devs concern ourselves with
> standards? I do, but sometimes I feel it's a wasted effort. What do yinz
> think?
>
> P.S. Slashdot returned a 403 Forbidden to the validator but when I saved
> the homepage locally, it failed too.


I follow the standards. It isn't a guarantee that the page(s) will work
everywhere, but I like to think it will. Maybe eventually, the browsers
will catch up and follow the standards too. In the mean time, some
manufacturers like to make their own standards, rather than following
those already in existance.

I also try to produce pages with minimal bloat. Keep the pages small, so
they load fast. It also makes them easier to edit later on.

Carolyn
 
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Sugapablo
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      03-26-2005
On Sat, 26 Mar 2005 08:08:11 -0500, Carolyn Marenger wrote:

> I also try to produce pages with minimal bloat. Keep the pages small, so
> they load fast. It also makes them easier to edit later on.


Yeah, that's why I created http://www.subuse.net

Sometimes, I still get this romantic nostalgia for the days when I had a
2400 baud modem, telix, lynx, and nothing but command line. Silly, but...

Plus, today, with so many web phones and mobile devices, there aren't many
sites that work well with them, so I figured there's a need for minimalism
again.

--
[ Sugapablo ]
[ http://www.sugapablo.net <--personal | http://www.sugapablo.com <--music ]
[ http://www.2ra.org <--political | http://www.subuse.net <--discuss ]

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Roy Schestowitz
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      03-26-2005
Sugapablo wrote:

> Just out of curiosity, while checking on a site I was working on, I
> decided to throw a couple of the web's most popular URLs into the W3C
> Markup Validator.


Good idea; good initiative.

> Out of microsoft.com, google.com, amazon.com, yahoo.com, aol.com, and
> mozilla.org, only Mozilla's site came back "Valid HTML".


That is sad news. This reflects on disregard for standards and moreover --
the inexperience of Web developers that these companies hire.

The movement of Web standards, much like that of Open Source, promotes a Web
that does not discriminate. This benefits everybody. So surely, Amazon,
Yahoo and Mro$ot do not care enough. Mozilla have been discriminated
against for many years.

Want to know more about Web standards? Talk to the visually impaired, talk
to the PDA user, talk to the person in Africa who cannot afford a Window$
licence.

> So if all these places, with their teams of web developers don't seem to
> care, should the rest of us small time web devs concern ourselves with
> standards?


Yes. One day many of us will have to 'clean up' our Web sites. You, however,
will not need to do so. Your present effort will be merited. 1 year ago
people designed their site to be compatible with IE. With so much going on
at the moment, can anyone look 5 years ahead?

> I do, but sometimes I feel it's a wasted effort. What do yinz
> think?


Once you practice a few validations, you learn from your mistakes and no
longer repeat them. Valid code becomes innate.

> P.S. Slashdot returned a 403 Forbidden to the validator but when I saved
> the homepage locally, it failed too.


Ouch. Probably the result of several people collaborating on content.

Roy

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http://schestowitz.com
 
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Benjamin Niemann
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      03-26-2005
Sugapablo wrote:

> Just out of curiosity, while checking on a site I was working on, I
> decided to throw a couple of the web's most popular URLs into the W3C
> Markup Validator.
>
> Out of microsoft.com, google.com, amazon.com, yahoo.com, aol.com, and
> mozilla.org, only Mozilla's site came back "Valid HTML".
>
> So if all these places, with their teams of web developers don't seem to
> care, should the rest of us small time web devs concern ourselves with
> standards? I do, but sometimes I feel it's a wasted effort. What do yinz
> think?
>
> P.S. Slashdot returned a 403 Forbidden to the validator but when I saved
> the homepage locally, it failed too.

You should note that it can be pretty hard to get such pages (I mean the
large portal like microsoft, yahoo...) valid. Such pages are dynamically
constructed with content from various sources. It is more of an
organizational monster act, to get the code corrected in databases in
various departments (finding and convincing the responsible people first),
hardcoded in custom software (perhaps developed by external contractors),
ad code delivered by affiliates...

mozilla.org is (compared to the others) a pretty small site and has just
been redesigned.
Even if the others started fixing their sites two year ago, I wouldn't
expect them to get the job done by now.
Microsoft for example just started this job (not sure, if it was
microsoft.com or another of their portal sites). They did pretty well, but
are still far from being perfect. IIRC some microsoft guy wrote about it -
and the obstacles in his blog.


--
Benjamin Niemann
Email: pink at odahoda dot de
WWW: http://www.odahoda.de/
 
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accooper
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      03-26-2005
I too try and follow the standards but I don't take much stock in the W3C
validator. Sometimes it will say stupid stuff like " a space is not allowed
here". I mean is that really gunna make a difference.

Also on things like CSS, IE does not support correctly half of it. Like
positioning is iffy. So I try my best and test my pages in IE and Mozilla or
Fire Bird. I'm more worried about my spelling!

--
Andrew C. Cooper
www.wordforlife.com/cmhm
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"Sugapablo" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
newsan.2005.03.26.13.16.34.824170@REMOVEsugapabl o.com...
> On Sat, 26 Mar 2005 08:08:11 -0500, Carolyn Marenger wrote:
>
>> I also try to produce pages with minimal bloat. Keep the pages small, so
>> they load fast. It also makes them easier to edit later on.

>
> Yeah, that's why I created http://www.subuse.net
>
> Sometimes, I still get this romantic nostalgia for the days when I had a
> 2400 baud modem, telix, lynx, and nothing but command line. Silly, but...
>
> Plus, today, with so many web phones and mobile devices, there aren't many
> sites that work well with them, so I figured there's a need for minimalism
> again.
>
> --
> [
> ]
> [ http://www.sugapablo.net <--personal | http://www.sugapablo.com
> <--music ]
> [ http://www.2ra.org <--political | http://www.subuse.net
> <--discuss ]
>
> http://www.subuse.net : text-only, low bandwidth, anonymous web forums



 
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Jim Royal
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      03-26-2005
In article <(E-Mail Removed) m>,
Sugapablo <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> So if all these places, with their teams of web developers don't seem to
> care, should the rest of us small time web devs concern ourselves with
> standards? I do, but sometimes I feel it's a wasted effort. What do yinz
> think?


Web standards are validation are a tool for you, for your own
development work -- today and into the future. But there's no value to
the visitor in trumpeting a web site as standards-compliant. No one
cares. But it definitely makes your job easier if you can check your
code against the W3C validators.

The Microsoft, Amazon and Yahoo! sites are works in progress. They
contain a great deal of legacy content and code, and are being modified
and updated all the time, on the fly. It is not surpirsing that such
sites are not yet standards-compliant. Only sites that are rewritten
from the ground-up can be made easily using web standards.

If web standards help you as a web developer, then use them, and forget
what the huge portals are doing.

--
Jim Royal
"Understanding is a three-edged sword"
http://JimRoyal.com
 
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Nick Theodorakis
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      03-26-2005
On Sat, 26 Mar 2005 08:01:30 -0500, Sugapablo
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>Just out of curiosity, while checking on a site I was working on, I
>decided to throw a couple of the web's most popular URLs into the W3C
>Markup Validator.
>
>Out of microsoft.com, google.com, amazon.com, yahoo.com, aol.com, and
>mozilla.org, only Mozilla's site came back "Valid HTML".
>


Why, I'm *shocked* that major corporations aren't developing to
standards!

>So if all these places, with their teams of web developers don't seem to
>care, should the rest of us small time web devs concern ourselves with
>standards? I do, but sometimes I feel it's a wasted effort.


Think of it as "future-proofing" your markup. You won't have to go
back and fix your sites that are broken in IE 8.2 or Fire&animal; 3.5.


>What do yinz think?


I think you must be from Pittsburgh.

Nick

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Sherm Pendley
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      03-26-2005
Sugapablo wrote:

> Out of microsoft.com, google.com, amazon.com, yahoo.com, aol.com, and
> mozilla.org, only Mozilla's site came back "Valid HTML".
>
> So if all these places, with their teams of web developers don't seem to
> care, should the rest of us small time web devs concern ourselves with
> standards? I do, but sometimes I feel it's a wasted effort. What do yinz
> think?


I took a look at the nutrition info for some of the most popular eateries in
the US: McDonald's, Wendy's, Burger King, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell. Turns
out they're terrible for you! Loaded down with fat, sugar, and sodium.

So, if these places don't seem to care, why should the rest of us concern
ourselves with nutrition when we're cooking our own meals?

sherm--

--
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Hire me! My resume: http://www.dot-app.org
 
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Toby Inkster
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      03-26-2005
accooper wrote:

> I too try and follow the standards but I don't take much stock in the
> W3C validator. Sometimes it will say stupid stuff like " a space is not
> allowed here". I mean is that really gunna make a difference.


The W3C validator doesn't ask itself "is this mistake going to make a
difference?" It just asks "is this valid?" And when it answers, it's
rarely incorrect.

--
Toby A Inkster BSc (Hons) ARCS
Contact Me ~ http://tobyinkster.co.uk/contact

 
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