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[ANN] Beta test of the W3C Markup Validator (0.8.0 beta 1)

From: olivier Thereaux <ot@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 19 Apr 2007 08:15:44 +0900
To: "www-validator@w3.org Community" <www-validator@w3.org>
Message-Id: <431BF98A-1451-4127-A9CC-B5937A6A9289@w3.org>

== Beta test for the W3C Markup Validator - version 0.8.0 beta 1 ==

Dear all,

It is with great pleasure and excitement that we are starting a Beta  
Test period for the W3C Markup Validator:


The W3C Markup Validation Service, also known as "HTML validator", is  
a popular free service and software providing Web content authors a  
way to check Web documents.

The previous stable version (v0.7.4) of the validator was released  
last November, but work on the version 0.8 had been going for a very  
long time, and is now reaching maturity. With your help, we can fix  
remaining bugs, find issues with the documentation, and release  
version 0.8.0 within a few weeks. If you would like to help with this  
beta test, please see the section "Testing and reporting issues" below.

   ** Changes **

The small version bump between 0.7.4 and 0.8.0 can be misleading:  
this new version is packed with changes. There are a number of  
cosmetic and UI changes, but the biggest difference is under the  
hood: the new validator is using a new library as a wrapper around  
its main parser, resulting in drastic speed improvements, and a lot  
of interesting new possibilities.

Users of the validator are probably familiar with the note stating  
"The Validator XML support has some limitations". Be prepared to say  
good bye to such a familiar sight: while the 0.8.0 validator is still  
using the same base parser for validation (the excellent and  
venerable opensp), it now has an XML sidekick making sure XML-ill- 
formedness won't go unnoticed.

There are many more changes in this version, below is a summarized  
list of the main ones:

* New architecture, faster and more reliable, scaling better to the  
growing usage of the validator
* Improved interface for better usability, accessibility
* New feature: automatic cleanup of markup (with Tidy)
* New Feature: additional XML-WF check, for more reliable validation  
of XML-based languages
* Back by popular demand: document outline feature
* New feature: checking that the documents are sent with proper  
Internet Media Type (MIME type)
* New feature: for XML documents, checking that the xmlns is present,  
and properly set.
* New Feature: grouped messages, an alternate view to the sequential  
display of errors
* New Feature: Direct Input form can be pre-filled with basic  
document structure
* Added support for SMIL 2.1, XHTML Basic 1.1
* ... and quite a few bug fixes, too.

   ** Testing and Reporting Issues **

In order to make the stable release as successful as possible, the  
tool will have to be tested in a variety of conditions by as many  
people as possible. This is the time when *you* get to make a big  
difference on the quality of the validator.

    * Test the new version online

In addition to the usual service, a test instance of the Markup  
Validator is available online at the following address:

Feel free to use this instance, or install it on your environment.

    * Feedback and Bug Reports

When testing the beta version of the validator, you are invited to look
for, and report, any bug or issue you may encounter. This includes
validation bugs, software errors, User Interface issues, and other
suggestions. Bug reports regarding the recognition of document types are
particularly welcome.

Instructions for feedback are given at:

It is recommended to read through these instructions, and check the
Mail archives and Bug database, before sending a new bug report to the
publicly archived mailing-list www-validator@w3.org.

If reporting a bug for this beta test, be sure to mark it as  
belonging to version 0.8.0b1, so that developers can easily look  
through the issues raised during this beta test.

    * Install the validator locally

The validator is free software, and it is possible to install it on a
local Web server. Testing whether the latest version install and runs
properly on all systems, and checking that the installation guide is
correct and up to date (see below) would be valuable. People already
maintaining a local instance of the validator are especially invited
to install and test the beta version.

A tarball of the latest version of the validator, as well as the
catalogue of grammars it uses, are available:


The installation guide is online, and distributed with the software:

For those already running an instance of validator 0.7.x, the  
following upgrade notes should be useful too:

   * Spread the word

As mentioned earlier, getting a high number of people to participate  
to this beta test would help make it a success. If you are part of a  
community of Web designers, developers, or other types of users of  
the W3C Markup Validator, invite others in these communities to  
participate, too. Please refer to this announcement on
the www-validator mailing-list:
and use your best judgement to avoid spamming.

   **  Thank you  **

Many thanks to the large, great community around the validator, for  
making this beta version happen.
There are many active people on the www-validator mailing-list and on  
the bugzilla tracking system, helping other users, raising issues and  
discussion orientations: the validator would not be a success without  
you. Thank you. Coding doesn't happen by itself, so kudos to the  
staff and volunteers. And finally, thank you all for participating in  
this beta test.

olivier Thereaux - W3C - http://www.w3.org/People/olivier/
W3C Open Source Software: http://www.w3.org/Status

Received on Wednesday, 18 April 2007 23:15:55 UTC

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