University Web Developers

University Web Developers

How important is it to you that your page validates with W3C standards?

I know I would like to be able to validate my pages, however constraints with DNN and access to the webconfig file make it difficult(read impossible) for me to make a valid page.

I suppose it is just frustrating when you are developing the site skin/template and all of the styles and html validate. But when you upload it to DNN and it converts the file to .ascx and applies 2 additional style sheets plus any other css files for custom modules and then the page no longer validates and ignores some style settings due to css inheritance. And then there are always cross-browser issues...

Does anyone else share this kind of frustration?

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I definitely share your frustration. I played a little game the other day of "see which sites pass the validator," and was surprised how few of big players (ie. Google, Slashdot, Digg, Amazon) can make it past the W3C. So what hope is there for the rest of us?

For my part, I make sure my pages pass validation to start off with, but if the details get muddled later in the process (ampersands in URLs, Flash embeds, etc.), I think there may be a point where you can call "good enough."

The real end-game in web development is making sure your customers (prospective students, donors, alums, in our case) can use your site, and validation is only useful up to the point where it helps meet that goal.
That is about the same conclusion that I came to. I really made a lengthy effort for our athletics site to have as semantic as possible markup within constraints of dnn. You can check it out here if you want.

athletics.cazenovia.edu
I try to make my pages validate whenever possible. However I'm not using DNN or other systems that mangle my code. That said, it's not the end of the world if there are errors. What matters most is the type of errors. If there are errors of little consequence that don't impact the user experience and there is no way to fix them (due to dependencies on other tools that create them) then it's probably something you just have to live with.
It is comforting to know that I am not the only one with these kinds of struggles.
Standards / semantics is the basic to code.

If you not can do a semantic code, some people will have a problems to navigate/use your web site/aplication. Screen readers, textual browsers, webmails, email softwares, etc, will not works correctly in some situations.

All softwares and apps that works with web (browsers, email softwares, etc) are following the campaign about webstandards and semantic, why you dont? This is not a optional decision, but it means the unique right way to do a correct codes.

At the start is too hard to do, but today I write a semantic code naturaly.

I'm observing that 90% of universities/colleges websites from USA and EUROPE uses a CMS application not developed by the employees of the university/college, and it's the hardest and longest way to do a semantic code by yourself.

ATTENTION: just to validate at w3c website not means that your code is semantic! The w3c validation is a first step to do the a semantic code.
:P Sometimes you dont want to do a semantic code :P
Example? Some freelances $$$... LOL
I have been discovering that it can output bad stuff, but if the modules are developed with standards in mind and not too much of the html is generated dynamically, it can be valid.
Creating sites that validate to the W3C standards are central to our approach. I recommend that anyone interested in Web Standards visit the Web Standards Project.

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