Re: Conformance ratings (was: Extra! Microsoft beats Netscape in the race for non-conformance!)

MegaZone (megazone@livingston.com)
Mon, 12 Feb 1996 19:36:27 -0800 (PST)


From: MegaZone <megazone@livingston.com>
Message-Id: <199602130336.TAA23804@server.livingston.com>
Subject: Re: Conformance ratings (was: Extra! Microsoft beats Netscape in the race for non-conformance!)
To: www-html@w3.org
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 1996 19:36:27 -0800 (PST)
In-Reply-To: <199602130258.DAA18063@tungsten.gn.iaf.nl> from "Abigail" at Feb 13, 96 03:58:50 am

Once upon a time Abigail shaped the electrons to say...
>It's not all penalizing pages, it's giving _service_ to the visitors
>of the search engine. No one forces you to pay attention to such ratings.
>Besides, things like <tag1> <tag2> </tag1> </tag2>, or <dd> without <dl>
>are not at all likely to suddenly become legal.

This is a question of the parser.  If it was a simple syntax check like
this - ok.  But the ones out there now are a lot more specific.  Our home
page checks out perfect with <http://www.webtechs.com/html-val-svc/> set
for Mozilla.  And if I set it for HTML 2.0 the only problems are the NS 
extensions.  (I'd like to find a checker I can have recurse our site to
check them all and just report errors.  I know my own code has some silly
things (When tired I sometimes close tags that don't require closing) but
moreso, some pages are done by someone in marketing and I find errors in
her HTML often enough for it to be a concern for me as Webmaster.

The tools I've tried are one page at a time.

>Not quite. It won't show very well if the user has a bright red background,
>overruling the document settings. And certain groups of colour blind people
>won't see red text very well, if at all. As far as I know, you cannot
>switch the <font color = '...'> off in Netscape 2.0. So while you get more
>attention from most of your customers, for some the message gets complete
>lost.

All of our pages have this:
<BODY bgcolor="#ffffff" text="#000000" link="#0000ff" vlink="#b245b0" alink="#2cbfe5">

To insure any color settings, images, etc, are clearly visible.  We have some
tables captured from docs that are transparent images that are a bit rough to
see for *me* on a grey background - I have 20/15 vision and perfect color
perception.  I know some people get into a good raving mood over author
control vs. reader control.  I've been involved with HTML since 1991, a
friend of a friend was over at CERN so my friend was always raving about
this keen new thing called the WWW.  He got me into it, so I've been through
a lot of the growth of HTML.  My attitude is - the author should be able to
set what they want to set and the reader should be able to override anything.
Unfortunately not all browsers allow for the latter.  I would hope that
NS implimented it like they did the link colors - all or nothing.  So if
the user forces a different color background, the other colors are ignored.
I'm on an SGI - I can't toggle that stuff in NS at all.

Bright red text on a white background is enough contrast for any color
blindness I'm aware of, I've had roommates and girlfriends with vision
problems.  The problems are generally one of contrast not absolute color
perception.

And, frankly, I don't expect a great many of our customers to set their
background to "#ff0000" - I'm willing to sacrifice that number for the
effect of drawing the attention of others.  This is my philosophy, that's
the nice thing - I'm the webmaster here, I set the code for my pages.
You can do whatever you want with yours.  I won't tell you to do it my
way, no one needs to tell me to do it theirs.  I have very strong opinions,
like most people in networking I've met - I hate pages that are only
usable in NS.  The old pages here were actually unviewable in Mosaic, the
markup was so NS specific it was completely broken in Mosaic and any browser
based on the NCSA code.  The prime directive under my control is that the
pages *will* be readable under other browsers - that NS extensions are just
that *extensions* to be added to a solid HTML document.  And if I ever get
around to doing anything with M$IE then I will do the same.  It is one
reason you won't find tables in our web, inconsistant behavior with NS and
Mosaic.  I didn't feel the effect was needed, so I just avoided them altogether
rather than mess with them.  I'll wait a while and come back to look them
over again later.

-MZ
--
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