Internet Standards Questionnaire

Hello All, 

I am Paul Smith a student on my final year of a degree in Computer Studies, 
as part of this course I'm doing a thesis on Internet Standards. 

I have produced the questionnaire below to evaluate web designer's opinions 
on current standards use and whether or not they are always important in the 
design process. 

If you could spare 10 minutes I would be grateful of any responses you may 

One final thing, if you do reply to this questionnaire could you please reply 
to my email ( rather than the mailing lists address as i 
don't want to clutter this list with my project work

Thank You in Advance
Paul Smith

Internet Standards Questionnaire 

'An evaluation of current Internet website standards and the development of a 
web site as a reference for web developers worldwide to use as a basis for 
good practice.'

Thank you for taking part in my survey. I am Paul Smith a final year student 
studying at The University of Derby and for my thesis I am producing a web 
site to teach web developers and people just starting out in the industry 
what standards there are for development as well as showing them how to 
implement these standards. As part of this project I am researching the views 
of leading web designers at present to get their opinion on web standards and 
how they use these.

The questionnaire should take you around 10 minutes to complete, could you 
please be as full and clear in your answers as possible.

General Internet Standards Issues

1.  Could you please list the three web sites that in your view are the best 
examples of good design and have given you the best experience online?


2.  Why do these sites illustrate good practice/design in your opinion?

3.  Could you please list the three web sites that in your view are examples 
of bad design and have given you the worst experience online?


4.  Why do these sites illustrate bad practices / design in your opinion?

5.  Do you think it is important for sites to comply with standards for 
development and if so why?

6.  Put the following list of web development considerations in order of how 
important you feel they are?

_ Security          
_ Navigation        
_ Consistency   
_ Readability 
_ Technologies used 
_ Accessibility 
_ Download times 
_ Any Other (not listed above) __________________

Please give one reason for each of your top three choices.


Design Issues

7.  When developing a web site do you test for download times?

_ Yes   _ No

If you answered no, why is this the case? If you answered yes however, what 
time scale would be generally acceptable?

8.  How do you keep your site content both consistent and readable?

_ CSS   _ Template Pages    _ Framesets     _ By Chance     
_ Not a Consideration

Please comment on any of your favoured approaches.

9.  Do you think keeping layout and information code separate is important if 
so why?

10. What tools do you use to create web pages (from the following)?
_ Notepad       _ FrontPage         _ Dreamweaver   _ Coldfusion    
_ Other  [Please Specify] _____________________

Accessibility Issues

11. Do you think that information on the Internet should be available to 
anyone and anywhere without restrictions placed on disabled people, or other 
groups of users who might have difficulties with accessibility?

_ Yes   _ No

12. If you answered yes, how do you think this should be done?

_ By altering existing sites to conform to guidelines? 
_ By creating alternative sites to put across the information? 
_ By using the same information but applying styles to it to tailor it for 
each market?

13. Currently there are only a very small percentage of web sites that 
conform to accessibility guidelines. A recent study by the Royal National 
Institute for the Blind (RNIB) has shown that 17 of Britain's leading web 
sites fail to conform to current accessibility standards. 

Do you think that there should be a greater effort to teach people when 
learning web design the importance of complying with these standards? (There 
are currently around 2 million people in Britain alone with some sort of 
visual disability)

_ Yes   _ No

If so how should this be done? 

Scripting Languages

14. Do you have experience of using a server-side scripting language such as 
ASP, PHP or Coldfusion when developing web sites?

_ Yes   _ No

If you answered yes could you please indicate which one(s) from the list 
below you have knowledge of and continue to answer all questions in the 
following section, if you answered no please go to the next section?

_ ASP       _ ASP.NET       _ PHP       _ Coldfusion        _ Perl  
_ Other (please specify) __________________________

15. As part of your programming which of the following good programming 
practices do you use?

_Naming Conventions (i.e. all connections to database starting with 'con'). 
_Separating Reusable functions from bulk of code 
_Using consistent names for variables corresponding to database values

16. When programming interactive pages do you try to keep programming code 
away from your design/layout coding?

If so do you use any of the following methods to achieve this?
_ Include Files 
_ Making all connections to Database before HTML coding starts 
_ Declaring Functions before HTML coding starts 
_ Saving Design Information as a Template 
_ Saving Layout information as a Style Sheet

World Wide Web Consortium W3C and Standards

The World Wide Web Consortium was created in 1994 by Tim Berners-Lee at 
Massachusetts Institute of Technology [MIT] to develop common standards for 
all technologies related to the Internet. W3C now has over 500 member 
organisations and has earned international recognition for its contributions 
to the growth of the Internet.

17. Before receiving this questionnaire were you aware of guidelines for web 
development that the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) produces?

_ Yes       _ No

18. Do you follow W3C's Guidelines on Accessibility when developing a web 

_ Yes       _ No

If you answered no, what measure are you taking to make you site more 

19. When developing HTML/CSS pages do you check all, some or none of you 
pages on W3Cs service. Why is this?


20. Do you think it would be useful if there were a coherent web site that 
demonstrated current web standards in order that people could learn more 
about how to implement these standards?

_ Yes       _ No

Would you be willing to use such a service if it was offered free?

_ Yes       _ No        _ Maybe

Would you be willing to take part in a short evaluation exercise of such a 

_ Yes       _ No

Thank you for taking part in this questionnaire, your contribution will help 
to evaluate current views on what makes web sites good/bad and whether or not 
web standards have any bearing on this.

Paul Smith

BSc Computer Studies
The University of Derby

Received on Monday, 23 December 2002 08:42:29 UTC