W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-validator@w3.org > March 2001

Re: Article on Testing Web Apps

From: Nick Kew <nick@webthing.com>
Date: Mon, 5 Mar 2001 10:54:28 +0000 (GMT)
To: "Michael D. Crawford" <crawford@goingware.com>
cc: www-validator@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.BSF.4.21.0103051010290.3497-100000@fenris.webthing.com>
On Mon, 5 Mar 2001, Michael D. Crawford wrote:

> (invite criticisms)

OK, a merciless savaging follows.  Don't take this the wrong way: I
wouldn't take the time and effort to write this if I didn't think
your article was worth it.

1. Your discussion of markup and DTDs seems to me oversimplified to the
   point where it risks risks misleading, and propagating (some of) the
   usual popular fallacies.

2. Under XML validators, you don't actually offer any online services
   like the HTML validators.  The Code Valet (one of the Site Valet tools)
   offers online XML validation, as well as HTML and XHTML.

3. You might want to update your htmlhelp.org doctype reference to
   a slightly more extensive discussion of doctypes that includes the
   page you referenced.

4. You've missed the most recent official doctypes for both HTML (ISO/IEC
   HTML) and XHTML (XHTML Basic).  Also I'd prefer to see you say
   explicitly that the raison d'etre for the transitional doctypes is
   to support legacy markup (that is - legacy as it was in 1999), and
   they are not recommended for new documents.

5. People like to prettify their sites for their favourite browser.
   Some of them may have the common prejudice that validation (or
   quality in general) and attractiveness or bleeding edge are
   mutually incompatible.  Some effort to disabuse readers of any such
   prejudices might be in order.

6. "In two cases the validator gave the following error:"
   Check posts to the list over the past few days.  This appears to be
   a bug in the validator.

7. Can I suggest links to Site Valet (validation, fixup, etc), and to
   the WAI evaluation and repair tools pages?

8. Wouldn't ab (and zb) be candidates for stress testing?

9. "I'd like to suggest that someone with the inclination to do
   the work should combine one of the available  validators with a load
   generator, so that all (or perhaps just a sample) of the documents
   downloaded from the machine under test are validated."

   Site Valet would do that if you set the builtin delay between fetching
   the pages from your site and (optionally) also for re-spidering your
   site to zero.  For obvious reasons, this option isn't available in the
   online service.

10. Another theme you might add is minimal-browser-testing.  The basic
    methodology would be to run tests through a proxy that stops cookies
    and other unreliable HTTP headers, strips out all clientside
    scripting, and (possibly) strips all presentational markup.  

>    Tilting at Windmills for a Better Tomorrow.

I like it.  Succinct yet accurate!

Nick Kew

Is your site a lawsuit waiting to happen?
See <URL:http://valet.webthing.com/intranet/> before it's too late.
Received on Monday, 5 March 2001 06:20:31 UTC

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