I made the comparison to the construction industry because:
1. we are both in the business of building things
2. the standards used benefit the end user.
A 'brickie' lays bricks in one of a number of standard methods using standard materials. The benefit of this is that the house shouldn't fall down on top of you under agreed environment conditions.
The other intrinsic link betwen the two industries is legislation. Health and Safety Law has driven many of the standards introduced into the building trade, and they have become a legal requirement before a brick is laid.
Accessibility leglisation will drive standards for websites just as they do access to shops, businesses, and government buildings. I do not condone nor ever wish for a central agency telling us how we must design our sites, we should retain some form of artistic license just as architects, shop front designers, and window dressers do. However I am totally in favour of a central agency regulating how the sites are actually constructed.
Whether 'illegal' websites are persued by law as much as dangerous buildings is in truth unlikely. Bad buildings kill, bad web sites are just a pain to some, but that doesn't make me any more comfortable with the idea of constructing a site with tag-soup, both morally, ethically, or legally.
>>> [EMAIL PROTECTED] 06/12/2005 17:52:38 >>>
The other problem with the validation logos is that they don't always
mean that the page is valid. In my experience, a large number of sites
with these logos don't serve valid code and fail the test that they link
I think that this analog with the construction world is not really
satisfactory as the need for, and potential repercussions of, standards
and 'validity' and compliance when building a house is much greater than
when just serving data.
BEFORE I get shot down in flames for blasphemy, I DO think that web
standards are important and I agree that XHTML should not be abused.
BUT when a website fails, no-one gets injures (except maybe the
mainainter if they have a violent boss :) ).
I don't think that any suitable analogy can really be used for this case
because the potential benefits of Semantics and good data presentation
are immense and unique, but only for large data sources. There is a
reason why LaTeX isn't taught to 16 year-olds in schools to do essays
with, it may produce nice, accurate, readable layouts but to spend the
time and effort trying to beat it into people is counter-productive.
Robert O'Neill wrote:
> If I wanted new windows in my house I'd buy from the BS Standard
> compliant company every time, wouldn't you ?
> The thing is though, if I click on the BS Standard logo it can't prove
> to me that the company is actually compliant , however in our
> industry, we as web designers can use our W3C logos to prove the
> point, by linking them to the validators.
> Some might find this argument slightly flaky as a BS Standard is an
> acknowledgment of quality rather than validity. The problem we have
> though is that until the consequences of legislation fully kick in
> (DDA etc) we are still being allowed to regulate ourselves and W3C
> ! validation seems to be the only option available.
> So I'll continue to add W3C validation logos to my sites until an
> official Govt. Standard is set. Considering the UK Government bases
> most of its current web standards (eGIF, NHS Standards etc) on W3C
> recommendations, I'll hopefully be in a decent position should that
> ever happen.
> Rob O.
> >>> [EMAIL PROTECTED] 06/12/2005 16:42:46 >>>
> I thought of a number of points relating to this standards issue...
> The icons by w3c and others are meaningless and are a problem. They
> need to have meaning to the reader. The average web visitor doesn't
> even know that the W3C exists, let alone that they make
> recommendations or determine structure and validity. When I first
> moved into the realm of writing better code (still honing skills) I
> didn't know what they were.In order to create meaning it has to
> represent actual value, ROI or benefit to users and buyers of our
> We, as developers need to be talking, not to the individual business
> owner but to business leaders in each segment and show them, not tell
> them how this will benefit them.
> I belong to several business forums and nowhere are you going to see a
> discussion of web standards and accessibility as most of these people
> don't know what that don't know. They all feel that how a site looks
> determines quality.
> Like it or not -- the only measure of the success of a website is the
> return on investment or an increase in profits or some other metric.
> If a business can achieve that with tag soup they are going to be
> happy. But most small business owners don't even consider this point.
> They just want a website, so they hire a firm that has websites they
> like to lo! ok at or that look good.
> We as an industry need to band together and make standards mean
> something that business owners can't live without. No FUD just a
> commitment by a segment of our industry that support web standards and
> that promotes the benefit to business consistently and continually. We
> need to stop preaching to the choir and build broad awareness that
> business is getting short changed but "design" firms who do website
> design are playing jack of all trades (although I would argue that web
> firms cannot be mutually exclusive to marketing). We need to create an
> environment that will make decision makers say to themselves, "Where
> can I get me a standards-based, accessible! site?"
> This whole argument of licensing and regulation is ridiculous because
> like most regulations there will be segments of the industry that
> lobby to keep eligibility for the standards to an absolute low or
> argue that this standard is designed to be protectionist. Why don't we
> make it that the tag soup chefs have no choice but get on board by
> creating client demand for clean efficient code.
> Strictly on the topic of this thread, one point I make to clients is
> that the code will be easily edited by anyone in the future and will
> require no special software to modify and therefore cost less to
> maintain. I don't usually get into these discussions with clients
> though because my local competitors can't even make good looking tag
> soup -- so I win be default. That will eventually change.
> All the best,
> Jay Gilmore
> Affordable Websites and Marketing Solutions for Real Small Business.
> SmashingRed Web & Marketing <http://www.smashingred.com>
> P) 902.529.0651
> E) [EMAIL PROTECTED] om <mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
> Ric & Jude Raftis wrote:
>> You are absolutely correct Andreas. Bit the same as an Australian
>> Safety Standard, or Certificate of Electrical Compliance and the
>> myriad of other bits of pieces of terminology and standards that we
>> live with every day. But if we don't educate the public, how will
>> they ever learn. The tag soup coders certainly won't tell them!
>> I certainly don't think it's about designers "stroking" their egos.
>> If it's compliant then tell the world, the visitors but MORE
>> importantly.....tell the client! Make them proud to have the icon on
>> their site.
>> Andreas Boehmer [Addictive Media] wrote:
>>> These icons with "AAA", "W3C", "HTML", "XHTML" on it only confuse most
>>> users. So often in usability tests I have heard users ask me: "What
>>> this mean"?
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