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  1. #1
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    Hey everyone,

    Back when I was learning HTML, it seems I kinda picked up a hodge-podge of different standards, so when I look at the code of one of my pages, everything's cross-browser functional, but it never validates to any one standard (like XHTML, HTML 4 Transitional, etc). So I was wondering, how important is it that our sites maintain 100% compliance to the w3c standards? I mean, I understand that we shouldn't go off and be stupid using propietary tags (IE) for our sites, but using stuff like 'topmargin=0' in our body tag--is stuff like that really worth fussing over?

    I was interested to see what you guys thought.

    --Joel

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  3. #2
    Senior Member filburt1's Avatar
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    It's not a lot of work to write XHTML 1.0 Transitional code along with valid CSS. In fact, pairing the two together lets you avoid using all those attributes in the first place.
    filburt1, Web Design Forums.net founder
    Site of the Month contest: submit your site or vote for the winner!

  4. #3
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    I've only started to really look into XHTML recently (I was kinda fond of regular HTML), but I've heard debates as to whether or not XHTML was truely the new thing. Assuming it is, however, what's the point in having the strict XHTML standard? If I remember, it was originally for handheld devices that didn't have the extra processing power to parse all the extra data, but the way handhelds and phones are improving, would the strict version still be required?

  5. #4
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    It's because markup (HTML and XHTML) is only meant for describing the content of your document. By using styling attributes such as 'topmargin = 0' you are defeating the whole object of XHTML/HTML. That attribute doesn't tell us anything about the content. That's where CSS comes in. In fact, once you've learnt how to use it (which really isn't hard, it took me all of a few hours to learn the basics of CSS, and it really doesn't get much harder as you move into it) it makes the whole process of building and maintaining a website a lot easier. Remember, XHTML and HTML are for structure, CSS is for presentation.

    Pragmatically speaking, it doesn't really matter as long as you're reaching out to the full potential of your target audience. However, this isn't likely to be the case when using any coding method. But by using XHTML and CSS, you're almost guaranteed to get some kind of functionality in the oldest of browsers. It future proofs your creation, meaning that your work will function in all of the next browser releases, and like I said before, once you've learnt how to use XHTML and CSS within the standards, then it makes life a lot easier

  6. #5
    Senior Member Fallout's Avatar
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    Valid code will usually degrade well with text-based browsers and older versions of modern browsers. CSS also makes it easy to remove elements, etc. for display on mobile phones or PDAs. Why waste time doing this:

    Code:
    <body topmargin="0" leftmargin="0" rightmargin="0" bottommargin="0">
    When this is much easier:

    Code:
    body { margin: 0; }

  7. #6
    Senior Member karinne's Avatar
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    [a web design portfolio - Currently NOT AVAILABLE for work | web design | Re-coding | PSD-to-HTML]
    I'm also on: virb - facebook - twitter - flickr - del.icio.us

  8. #7
    Senior Member rosland's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Linok
    ...everything's cross-browser functional, but it never validates to any one standard (like XHTML, HTML 4 Transitional, etc). So I was wondering, how important is it that our sites maintain 100% compliance ...
    I think the general idea is to force all the browser producing companies into following a common standard.

    If you force everyone into following a strict standard, it will be much easier to expand the technology through add-ons and inoperability.

    XML which is basically a technology that makes it possible to transfer data platform independantly, has achieved this.

    The design and presentation language HTML however, has not had the same motivation for inoperability yet. Now it's slowly gaining momentum.
    So far, all browser producers have had a "market domination" objective, and have tried to include special formatting code that only their product can reproduce.

    The point of strict HTML, is to utilize the cross platform ability of XML.
    You seperate content from design, and use an international standard (CSS) to visualize your content.

    That way, all presentation would be similar regardless of browsers (the whole point of W3), and more advanced features could be embedded in the language itself.

    The success of such an approach though, utterly depends on webmasters complying to the new standard. If not, the whole concept is watered out and will never grow to its potential.
    S. Rosland

  9. #8
    Senior Member Arkette's Avatar
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    There is some evidence to suggest that if pages dont validate againt there doctype dtd, then some search engines will fail to parse the document fully and so the site will not neccesarily be crawled properly. There has been some rumours that googlebot is one such crawler.
    End of Line.

  10. #9
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    There are many times when makeing a docment Xhtml compliant will make it easier to understand it when looking at it later. Also since in order to be valid Xhtml the document must be well formed it makes the scope of a particular tag easier to follow for example:
    HTML Code:
    <p><b>this is to be bold</p>
    <p>well this is not
    may yield unexpected results
    also hideing the second paragraph eg display:none; may cause an error
    the following is much easier to understandL
    HTML Code:
    <p><strong>This is to be bold</strong></p>
    <p>Well this is not</p>
    the above example is now valid and the strong tags replace the b tags that are non-compliant
    Thee Pyro Wolf

  11. #10
    Senior Member Eddy Bones's Avatar
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    Bold tags are completely compliant.


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