On 12/12/2011 17:28, Patrick H. Lauke wrote:
On 12/12/2011 17:18, Nancy Johnson wrote:
I noticed this validator only checks for xhtml 1.1 basic or mp1.2. Is
it going to checking again html5? http://validator.w3.org/mobile/

Not to my knowledge, no. You could argue that it's aimed at older
generations of phones/browsers.

We (W3C) have been discussing this issue. The mobile checker is an implementation of the mobileOK Basic Tests [1] which is the machine testable subset of the Mobile Web Best Practices [2]. As long as that is true we have:

- a checker rooted firmly in a specification - which is a good thing;
- a checker that is growing old and, as is obvious, increasingly out of date - which is a bad thing.

If we were to update the checker to, for example, cover HTML5 or any other technology (CSS3, SVG or whatever) then how would we root that in a spec? It becomes a dynamic system without a reference point.

Now - since a lot of work went in to the checker (and the specs behind it) and it's a potentially useful tool, we don't want to lose it. However, we would need some sort of community effort to determine what the checker would check. There's also an issue of cost - maintaining the validation suite means writing new code.

For now, I think we can say that the mobileOK checker is a useful guide. A lot of the best practices are still entirely valid. Taken with the Mobile Web Applications Best Practices [3] they form good advice to any mobile developer. However, it does need some interpretation - which is a pity.

For example, the checker will warn you if you don't use the application/xhtml+xml MIME type. If you're coding in HTML5 that's simply wrong and I haven't seen an instance where there's an advantage in using the XHTML MIME type.

The checker will scream at you if you don't include cache control or image dimensions - those are very much right!

What about media queries... Is the mobile checker suitable for if
you are creating one set of htmls code and for mulitple devices?


I'd say not yet. What we need is the mechanism for how to manage change and how to effect change in the checker. Keep nagging us - that might help us get it higher on the agenda.



[1] http://www.w3.org/TR/mobileOK-basic10-tests/
[2] http://www.w3.org/TR/mobile-bp/
[3] http://www.w3.org/TR/mwabp/


Phil Archer
W3C eGovernment


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