True Value of the W3C

  • ArtphotoasiA
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I'm really surprised that many webmasters do not understand fully THE HUGE point here, really surprised.

The point IS NOT if search engines care W3C validation or if customers care W3C validation (they have probably no idea).

Maybe webmasters are too much focused in the job in the profession and into please customers… this is legit of course… but we all sometimes forget that at stake there is also internet and technology development to be considered for the future. We all care in the immediate in the short period of time of the small thing of the detail of the result but not of the WHOLE PICTURES.
W3C exist since years but regretfully few people see there the HUGE VALUE in W3C

Internet should be a better place for everyone starting from WEBSMASTERS that always complain about website with strange behaviors, about layout that do not look same in all browsers, about code soups done in the past (most in 90’) if there is the need of a restyling of an old website…. Plus one million bugs around.
Why we have to face all that?
It is because the marketing reason (not the tech reason) as the war between browsers have forced people to use the worst browser ever IE the winner was not the best tech but the best marketing, legit or not.
Netscape was far much better and more developed but lost.

Because of this only NOW after 10 years we are coming out to see finally in the market good browsers like Firefox or Opera and only now we see IE8 covering at least many bugs revealing the fact that they are far behind the line….
CSS2 exist since years do you realize that? JavaScript same thing… where IE5 IE6 IE7 have been? Sleeping?

Only NOW after 10 years we all talk about the separation about markup and graphic about XHTML and CSS but this was already the main plan of W3C …. we all lost years of internet development due to stupid commercial wars and due to careless of webmasters.
I always make W3C complain website and I explain to my customer the add value of this. It not cost more nor do I spend more time writing a code instead of another. I also complained with big boys like Amazon (but there are many others) that offer widget to be copied in a webpage and their code is not valid, unless you change it. It is so hard follow the same line?
Beside I prefer to buy HP products because they support W3C.

I do hope that in future search engine will consider the W3C validation much more then the present link juice because without a common and clear code we all are loosing time and resources thinking to the code instead of contents and creativity.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

  • digitalMedia
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This is a great big stinking load of crap.

IE didn't win the browser war of the late 90's, Netscape lost. Netscape 3 was a better browser and had a bigger market share despite the fact that IE 3 had CSS support and NS didn't. Also despite the fact that IE had PNG usage implemented, albeit badly, and NS didn't. ISP's everywhere were giving out Netscape whenever you signed up for their service.

Then, both browsers released ver. 4 and guess what? Netscape ver. 4 sucked balls. IE 4 was far more innovative and gave developers what they wanted.

Then IE 5 came out an all that could be heard from the Netscape camp was the sound of implosion. There was no Netscape 5. This is when Netscape lost. IE stood unopposed. The only other browser on the radar, at that time, was Opera and it was so brutally clunky that it wasn't usable.

Guess what else? No one was talking about standardized markup back then because there wasn't any. Browser makers, including Netscape, were innovating their own markup schemes and it was happening very very quickly. Faster than any standards organization can move, even on their best day.
  • mindfullsilence
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I'm going to agree with the facts that dM presented, but also agree that CSS 2.0 has been around quite a while and IE held back the other browsers such as firefox, safari, and opera for quite some time.

IE won the browser wars in the beginning. And now they're realizing that they're losing the upper hand and attempting to correct themselves. Might be too late though.

In any case, we validate because we want our code to run smoothly on all browsers, and because we want to know that if our code doesn't run smoothly, it's not because of our code; not because of SEO, marketing, or whatever else you mentioned. If the code is valid, and the browser doesn't render it according to standard, it's no longer our fault, the webmaster can wipe his hands clean of it.
  • ArtphotoasiA
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Post 3+ Months Ago

mindfullsilence wrote:


IE won the browser wars in the beginning. And now they're realizing that they're losing the upper hand and attempting to correct themselves. Might be too late though.



Exactly!
  • dyfrin
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Post 3+ Months Ago

IE won browser war? How so? What war?
IE infiltrated every PC.
It didn't need installation, it was just there.
You tell most people on the street to install firefox and they don't have a clue.

Where is that video about browsers again?

It wasn't a war, it was an assassination.

DM has a point about no standards back then, man geocities was ruled by flashing text and contrasting rainbowlike colors.
Using the wayback machine even big business had junk sites.

I remember the netscape cds.. wish they were sharper so could have cut out ninja stars.
  • ArtphotoasiA
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dyfrin wrote:
IE won browser war? How so? What war?
IE infiltrated every PC.
It didn't need installation, it was just there.
You tell most people on the street to install firefox and they don't have a clue.

Where is that video about browsers again?

It wasn't a war, it was an assassination.

DM has a point about no standards back then, man geocities was ruled by flashing text and contrasting rainbowlike colors.
Using the wayback machine even big business had junk sites.

I remember the netscape cds.. wish they were sharper so could have cut out ninja stars.



Yes I agree with that assassination can be the right term... was absolutely not fair.

Beside I remember well sites in '90 jezz... they were so horrible.
  • joebert
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I use the W3C validation mostly as an HTML element hierarchy debugger. :)

I actually believe that the whole standardization thing has seriously hurt innovation in the last 5 years I've been around. Instead of having at least one company that tries to innovate, we instead have multiple companies crying and whining about the others and worrying about keeping everything equal.

When I started out things like Internet Explorers Active-X controls seemed really cool, there were a lot of things you could do with them, still are as far as I know.

When I had to start catering to Firefox and the like, I really feel like I started developing with one hand tied behind my back. Sure it meant more people could play, but the game just wasn't as open as it was before, there weren't as many things that could be done.

It was like taking away my science kit and giving me a tub of playdough because one neighbors kid burned his hand with something in it and the other neighbors kid was jealous that all he had was playdough.
  • cipher
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I happen to share joebert's view, in that the standardization just hurts innovation in the end. As with anything in life, many new scenarios came to light, yet the W3C is just too slow to address them. True this is due to a lot of whining but that's expected when there are too many chefs in the kitchen. This translates to slower innovation.

Yes, the idea of being open and standardized is a good thing, HTML 4 has been around for 12 years now and has not grown up. Looking back at Active X controls we can say it was not very good for the ecosystem but the reasons for its existence are quite evident.

Flash (via Flex) and Silverlight have already demonstrated that better user experiences on the web are possible. This time Microsoft took a better approach IMO by keeping the spec open, allowing basically anyone to facilitate the technology on any platform. I think the Mono project demonstrates this quite well.

Microsoft did drop the ball with IE but I think they're committed to competing again now that the game has changed (proof competition is a good thing). The innovation would probably always be in those proprietary technologies though. HTML5 and CSS3 clearly have good ideas but who knows when they will be standardized, and worst yet, when they will be fully adopted.

Give us developers what we want and the end users will get what they want more usable, better looking, and always improving. Like DM said Netscape lost because they dropped the ball. The phrase innovate or die held true then, and it holds true today.
  • mk27
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cipher wrote:
I happen to share joebert's view, in that the standardization just hurts innovation in the end.


I'd just like to point out that in no other realm of programming could you possibly say that and even consider having it make sense. No one would, and if they did they'd get laughed out of the room. If there were no C standard, for example, your computer would probably not work. There are contentious issues in the compiler/OS "market", but in the end, they all adhere to a standard. The same is true of 3D graphics API's, which hardware manufacturers must implement. There are some notable discrepancies between say, a nvidia implimentation and an ATI one, but nothing as severe as there is in javascript or css.

I believe PHP is standardized (mostly because it is always implemented the same way) -- if php commands sometimes worked and sometimes didn't, because there were five different servers in use all with their own version, and you had to spend half your time writing try/catch routines or ifdef type things for every little rinky-dink function, I don't think y'all would be very happy or consider that to be "furthering innovation". That's TOTALLY RIDICULOUS.

I very definitely believe the lack of standards hurts. I have tailored the way I work to the lowest common denominator (IE), meaning there are definitely things I would do that I can't, because it won't work in IE. That is totally normal AFAICT, and just looking around at the state of the web to me indicates that it does completely adhere to this (a failure to live up to potential) -- I think the "standard" of what makes a good page would be A LOT higher if there were a real standard in use for programming them.
  • cipher
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mk27, I believe the topic was talking about the "True Value of the W3C" so that is what I was replying to. However, I do take a similar stance for the general case, and if you and your audience laughed I really wouldn't care. There are many people who are myopic, don't like to learn, and don't like change, but I'm respectful to their beliefs. We often know that things can be better but just settle for less anyway.

Granted there are 3 main ways to arrive at a standard I am for the kind where a company simply published good specifications. This way you avoid having too many chefs in the kitchen and you get meaningful innovation (provided the company has a vested interest). Again, Microsoft developed C# and .NET but Mono provides a great open source alternative.

C is a fun minimalist language but it sucks for a modern programming language. Your view that without a standard my computer would not work is absurd because a single implementation could serve as a defacto standard (I prefer formal specs though). Concurrency is an everyday part of software development in modern times. How did C evolve to address this? What about Unicode? I guess there is need for Go (from Google, not the esoteric one) afterall.

PHP actually uses the defacto method of standardization I mentioned above, basically follow the leader. Unlike C this allowed PHP to evolve, albeit very very slowly. Some of the core devs don't even see the need for OOP in PHP to this day. I think it is a poorly designed language and is highly inconsistent. Nothing against the language though, I started with it and still use it professionally.

To me taking the lowest common denominator is pretty analogous to settling for less. I don't underestimate the challenges involved with setting the standards especially for something as large as the clientside technologies that power the web, but hopefully you'll have mainstream HTML5 in 2020 (the published timetable is a joke). If I get the year wrong then thanks to Google, as they have a vested interest in HTML5. To the W3C's credit they are providing lexing and parsing rules for HTML5 so hopefully this helps with maintaining consistency across browsers.
  • mindfullsilence
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Quote:
I have tailored the way I work to the lowest common denominator (IE), meaning there are definitely things I would do that I can't, because it won't work in IE. That is totally normal AFAICT


Actually, it's beginning to me more common to see sites that look different in each browser and take advantage of the abilities of the better/more advanced browsers.

Click here

Things like CSS3 selectors that only work in safari and chrome, but degrade nicely in IE are being used all the time.
An example
  • ArtphotoasiA
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Nice reading guys... really interesting... but I strongly believe in standards.... of course appears like to slow down development but is not.

Is like sustainable development... can't be caos in code... you see already the results of code soups!
  • mk27
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cipher wrote:
C is a fun minimalist language but it sucks for a modern programming language.


You're totally and completely ignorant dude. It is still one of the 3 most widely used programming languages in the world, and the fastest. Apache is written in C. Web browsers, C and C++. PHP's interpreter is done with C. Spidermonkey is C++. Every single scripting language (python, perl, ruby, etc.) they are all written in C. All of them. It's also incredibly portable -- all those embedded modern devices everyone loves, they're programmed in C. Core 3D APIs for graphics hardware: C. The linux kernel, and most of the core OS: pure C.

There is no point in arguing about programming languages this way, as the fact is: pick a language, and chances are plenty of people have done way way more impressive things with it than you or I will ever do. So you are free to like or dislike something on a personal level, that is kind of irrelevant to the general reality. And, in any case, I was just using that as an example -- all programming languages have standards. Java has standards, perl has standards, python has standards, C++ has standards, lisp has standards etc. Those issues with unicode, etc are an okay parallel, but witness this is not really an aspect of the core syntax. Using css and javascript (which I love, but) is like using something that still has "BETA TESTING" stamped on it. The inconsistency is outrageous.

I'm being a little silly because in this sense js does have a standard (ECMA)* but I just have to point out that saying "no standard will lead to greater innovation" is a very seriously flawed philosophy. Having a more standardized language (be it css, html, or whatever) will enable you to innovate more. Thinking anything else is like, delusional, people. The web is great but I have no doubt in my mind that it's development has been hampered to no end by a lack of standards.

Look at flash: flash has a standard. An awful strict one. And in many ways, it represents "the cutting edge" of web technology. If everyone got their tish together, the whole thing could be that way...

Going back to the 3D graphics example, you've got two major standardized libraries implemented by manufacturers on a hardware level: DirectX, which is managed by MS, and openGL, which is it's own entity. I know for a fact that those manufacturers (mostly, nvidia and ATI) have big differences, and (as with browsers) also attempt to out manoeuvre one another in ways that have nothing to do with innovation and everything to do with "business" -- just like the browser wars. But they still sit down at a table together and agree to implement a pretty strict standard (or two)** because without that, no one would want to write tish for their hardware, or it would not be as impressive as it is. By comparison, the web is like decades in the past.

* not to mention that web-dev is a very high level multi-faceted beast.
** which the real reason there is resistance to this is that you will not always get your own way, so the elephant in the room (MS) pulls its ball and says, hey, I don't have to play...very nice ;)
  • cipher
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I would never rule out the fact that I am "totally and completely ignorant". Putting motives (like market penetration) aside what does propularity today have to do with improving/moving-forward/making-things-better?

The big picture here is that if concurrency (an example we can all identify with) is at the point where it is essential to programming, like an "if" statement is, then common sense dictates that it should be moved into the language, versus being a library (for instance). For this to occur it requires changes to the language. If there is a huge standards body then incorporating such a feature can take many many years.

"My opinion" is that in the year 2010 C sucks. I'm not saying it is not an important part of the story getting us where we are today. Many scenarios have come about illustrating the need for a better language that can improve the way things are done. This doesn't mean you can't still do whatever you want with C. At least the birth of Go shows that others probably share that opinion too.

Many of the remarks above indicate a lack of understanding what I said so I will reiterate. "My opinion" on the true value of the W3C is that the standardization in place is hurting innovation. And again, in cases where you have one company or smaller body setting the standards we move forward faster.
  • ArtphotoasiA
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cipher wrote:

Many of the remarks above indicate a lack of understanding what I said so I will reiterate. "My opinion" on the true value of the W3C is that the standardization in place is hurting innovation. And again, in cases where you have one company or smaller body setting the standards we move forward faster.



Sure thing cipher... the standard making process must be faster... is unbelivable that we are still waiting CSS 3 specification but this is the real word. If no economic gain nothing move. If that will not change we all humans are going nowhere... is not just releated to internet but to all system.
  • digitalMedia
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*reels back from the awful smell of communism*

:lol: Just kidding. Or am I? Yeah, just kidding. Or, maybe not?!

Seriously though, I'm not willing to give control to a standards organization, exclusively. There has to be a reciprocal relationship between the theoretical world of standards and the needs, desires and innovations of people (developers, clients, end-users, browser makers, etc.) in the real world.

From my perspective, Microsoft (and companies like them) and their products, flawed or not, are resposible in no small part for my career as well as the careers of many of my colleagues. This wasn't because they let themselves be directed by W3C.

But, I do recognize the needs to outline ideals in standards as a baseline of common thinking.
  • ArtphotoasiA
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digitalMedia wrote:

Seriously though, I'm not willing to give control to a standards organization, exclusively. There has to be a reciprocal relationship between the theoretical world of standards and the needs, desires and innovations of people (developers, clients, end-users, browser makers, etc.) in the real world.


I agree with that for sure and also will go on thinking that only a word without the value of money (in all its form) is the only possible next level way... is not matter of comunism or not... the bill is already on the table and we all will pay for... but this is not the forum for politics... :mrgreen:

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