[theme-reviewers] w3c validation and html5 in core

Otto otto at ottodestruct.com
Tue Apr 5 14:54:22 UTC 2011

On Tue, Apr 5, 2011 at 9:40 AM, Edward Caissie <edward.caissie at gmail.com> wrote:
> Although validation is important it is not, and others may disagree, an
> absolute point to resolve a Theme to "not-approved".

I agree. Since the web started moving away from XHTML and back towards
the HTML side of things, validation has become less important overall.

Validation made sense for XHTML, since XHTML is required to be a valid
XML document. HTML, on the other hand, is more freeform, and doesn't
require exact adherence to the standard. HTML parsers ignore things
they don't understand, so it's perfectly valid HTML for me to write
<input foo=bar> even if foo isn't a valid attribute. The validator
systems will complain about this, because they don't know what foo is,
but different browsers will interpret foo according to their own

It's a seemingly sloppier way of doing things, but if the web has
learned anything from XHTML, it's that web designers prefer the
browsers to try to figure out what they mean instead of having an
actual standard of behavior. Considering that no browser ever fully
adhered to the XHTML standard and implemented it properly, it seems
that forcing standardization like XML documents is an idea whose time
has not yet come.

So I would use validation only as an indicator of where to look for
potential problems, not as an absolute standard of correctness.


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