Lenssen Cites Nine Web Standards Issues

    June 26, 2006
    WebProNews Staff

The World Wide Web could be a much user-friendlier place if developers heeded the words of non-pareil blogger Philipp Lenssen on the misunderstanding of web standards.

Maybe it should be called 9 Simple Rules For Crafting Websites instead.

In Lenssen’s entry on Google Blogoscoped, the virtues of presenting and purposing content look a little less virtuous in practice.

He sheds no tears at the unlamented departure of Wireless Markup Language from mobile web development.

Although CSS could provide the bridge from desktop browser to smartphone screen for a site, Lenssen cites mobile browser makers for breaking web standards.

The use of Ajax, or more importantly its rediscovery, has been wonderful for the on-screen experience.

Sort of. As Lenssen noted, Ajax implementations today introduce new features but destroy others, like use of the back button or copy-and-paste as examples.

“Now the rule of thumb should be this; put JavaScript on top of HTML to allow for features you otherwise wouldn’t have,” he said.

Those who have worked with CSS and battled to have it work the same in Internet Explorer as it does in Firefox will recognize the problems listed in the article’s discussion of CSS hacks.

Lenssen noted the trick to making various flavors of IE behave when visiting Porsche.com after its relaunch.

Those hacks should be used sparingly, he writes. Workarounds like those could prove much less useful as new browsers enter the marketplace.

The list is well worth a read for developers, especially ones who may think CSS always makes sites more accessible or that CSS completely separates layout from content. Standards can be pretty useful.


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David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.