Re: Awards and award attitude :(

by "Paul Rudolf" <paul(at)>

 Date:  Sat, 25 Sep 1999 13:07:34 -0700
 To:  <rfriedma(at)>
 Cc:  "hwg-basics" <hwg-basics(at)>
  todo: View Thread, Original

>Wow, Paul.  It's obvious that you really got tweaked on this one<G>!  I
>don't blame you though.  I have the same set of frustrations.
>I am dubious of awards from the get go.  When there was only the OSCARS,
>an award for film making meant something.  Now "the Left-handed,
>green-eyed Cinemetographer's Guild of Perth Amboy Awards" attitude have
>cheapend awards for everyone.  In the webworld, since no one REALLY
>knows who anyone is, or what an organization is, an award from something
>as real sounding as the WebBuilders of America, could only mean I sent
>myself congrats!

There are many Awards that are meaningful, and are worthy for application.
But the awards "scam" that I realized last night was downright disgusting.

>I am a firm believer in valid html in much the same way I am a firm
>believer in English grammar.  That doesn't mean I don't use "aint" from
>time to time.

This is where I think I have a firm hold for my opinions.  A page that will
validate will have a better chance of being viewed regardless of the
browser.  After all, isn't that our ultimate goal?

An analogy I've used, is let's assume a person is starting a car repair
business.  This person will only work on Fords and Chevys, just because some
agency says these cars are the most popular.

Well, with the amount of car manufacturers, a 4% market could be interpreted
as being in the most popular group.

>It may well be that the reasons all those sites "failed" the W3
>validation may have been because they included things that the validator
>didn't "understand" like plug ins, or javascript, or certain protocols
>like whether omitting <./P>.  I know that might cause trouble, but if
>the author didn't know that -- or didn't care -- the error will show,
>even though many browsers might display correctly.

Actually, most of the W3 validation could be fixed by just declaring the
DOCTYPE, and using the "alt=".  The failure of the missing alternate text is
where the text browser chokes on your site.  The browser doesn't fail, but
your message sure does.  Plugin and JavaScript will validate if the W3's
suggestions are followed.

I viewed a local Web Shop's Home Page in LYNX, and couldn't even tell the
name of the company from the display.  When viewed with IE or NN, the site
was gorgeous!  This is one shop I will never sub-contract any work for my

>If the author chooses to ignore html grammar, just as an author might
>ignore English grammar that's one thing, and is probably OK.
>Way too often, IMHO, inexperienced people toss together a page which
>doesn't work in MOST browsers.  I have learned a lot about HTML and web
>design from these lists.  I am still amazed at how little you need to
>know to turn out a readable web page.

Granted.  100% compliance may not be necessary, but we all need to realize
that everyone on the web doesn't use 1 of 2 browsers.

I have built some terrible sites, and still do!  But usually it's because of
the ignorance of the client, requiring that certain things be a certain way.
I had one client that refused to use the "alt" attribute, claiming the
"yellow box" did fit in his color scheme and covered up his picture.  Of
course, I didn't put my "mark" on any of his pages.

During my teaching sessions (I teach FrontPage), most of the homework
assignments won't come close to validation.  Definately acceptable to a
person learning the basics.  However, through the intermediate and advanced
sessions, the student is enlightened through the use of a text editor to not
only "fix" the code, but also how to modify existing and create new
FrontPage templates to help FrontPage create a more usable code.

By the way, I created (and am still working on) a site for a disability
related company with the help of some of my students.  This site is done
using frames.  It passes 100% validation of HTML 4.0, passes Bobby, and is
fairly attractive.  (I am far from being an artist or layout expert.)  The
site's content is viewable by NN 2.0, but without the background and other
things.  I took the time to make sure my frames page was totally navigable
by a non-frames capable browser.  It is also viewable and navigable with

NOTE: I used to work for this company, and still have my fingers in a lot of
projects with this company.  The site was recently moved to my server and a
lot of functions, scripts and links may not yet work.  This site was also
created with FrontPage 98, then reworked to clean up the code and meet
validation requirements.

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