[Fsf-friends] [Fwd]: please comply with standards

Harish Narayanan harish@gamebox.net
Wed Jun 9 18:29:28 IST 2004

Mahesh T. Pai wrote:

> > The bottom of  your page mentions that ``Site optimised  for 800 X 600
> > monitor resolution, java enabled, IE 4.0 or above.''
Probably they meant, "has been tested using" where they said "optimized 
for". Because I don't run my monitor on 800x600, have java, or use IE, 
but I can get around the site quite comfortably.

> > particular   operating   system.    Firstly,   it  is   in   no   way,
> > `optimisation'.   You  are  simply  using public  funds  for  carrying
> > advertisement for a particular company.
Yes, they are being quite evil, considering the technologies they are 

> > You ought  be aware that the users  of the world wide  web use diverse
> > operating systems  and browsers.  In  order to make things  easier for
> > both developers and  users of the internet, the  W3C consortium (World
> > Wide Web  Consortium) has laid  down certain standards for  web pages;
> > and  it  would have  been  appropriate for  you  to  conform to  those
> > standards.
> > 
> > Also, you  will appreciate  that the Internet  is a useful  medium for
> > people with  disabilities to communicate  with the outside  world, and
> > compliance with  the W3C  standards automatically ensures  that people
> > with disabilities  can access your  site (for example, using  a screen
> > reader).  You will appreciate that  as an organ of the government, and
> > an organisation discharging Sovereign functions, you have to adhere to
> > certain standards of fairness and propriety.
This is where I have a problem. W3C standards compliance does not 
necessarily imply ease of use, accessibility or anything like that. You 
can find plenty of well formed markup, fully standards compliant 
websites that are absolutely horrendous to use. And no, I am not going 
to give an example.

Not like any of the sites I am responsible for fail to comply to W3C 
style and markup specifications, but there are a great deal of websites 
that don't validate, but still look and work just fine across a wide 
spectrum of browsers on varying platforms. Google, for instance. There 
are equally competent groups that work outside the realm of the W3C [ 
http://whatwg.org/ ] involved in coming up with standards themselves 
that work at a (hopefully higher) different pace than the W3C and more 
in tune with rate of evolution of browser technology. There is no real 
point to any of this, except, compliance with W3C doesn't automatically 
make it "good" and lack of compliance doesn't make it "bad".

> > I hope that  you will understand the issue  in its proper perspective,
> > and ensure that your pages fully conform to W3C standards and further,
> > remove references to specific brands of browsers.
Of course. Ads for specific proprietary technology are totally 
unacceptable. It's just, for what it's worth, some slightly offset css 
positioning (when not viewed in IE) and the evil ad apart, this site is 
quite clean and navigable.


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