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  1. #1
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    W3C Valid Stickers

    What is everyone else opinion of websites that display Valid (X)HTML stickers?

    I recently had a client who wanted a redesign of his website, one of the things he noted that he didn't like from his old site was that the designer took the liberty of putting a valid HTML sticker on it.

    I personally think that websites should use valid HTML, but a big sticker stating it is just showboating and adds no value to the user experience of the website

  2. #2
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    I wouldn't say it's showboating.. but I would say that in a large majority of cases it's a useless graphic.
    The average web surfer doesn't know (X)HTML/CSS and isn't interested in if your site is coded well. They just care if it works - and if it does, then they don't need the graphic (and if it doesn't, the graphic isn't going to convince them it's a good site).

    I think specific sites may add value having it. For instance, it could be a web design company showing on one of their pages that they code to web standards. Or it could be part of a "you can trust us" (or a shopping cart) to try to show customers that the business can be trusted. I don't think it should be on every page on any site... (except maybe Microsoft's ).
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  3. #3
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    It's like having an 'I'm not a Paedophile' sticker on your site.
    It goes without saying (at least for normal people).
    Birnam wood is come to Dunsinane

  4. #4
    SitePoint Zealot
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    Yeh, well said guys!

    A bit of a lol moment when reading:

    "It's like having an 'I'm not a Paedophile' sticker on your site.
    It goes without saying (at least for normal people)."

    The only time i would do it is if I was advertising my skills as a front end web developer

  5. #5
    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AutisticCuckoo View Post
    It's like having an 'I'm not a Paedophile' sticker on your site.
    It goes without saying (at least for normal people).
    Tommy, You are so in the wrong profession, you should be a news critic columnist

  6. #6
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophybronze trophy
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    Tommy, You are so in the wrong profession, you should be a news critic columnist
    That or a scientist

  7. #7
    SitePoint Author silver trophybronze trophy

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    So you guys think I should quit my job and change careers, eh?
    Thanks for the vote of confidence...
    Birnam wood is come to Dunsinane

  8. #8
    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    Tommy... well columnists make good content writers and web design is a science (of computers) so don’t feel too bad, we just think you should expand your CV to include something along the lines of “Comedic mad scientist” or something similar!

  9. #9
    SitePoint Author silver trophybronze trophy

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    Well I've got the unmanageable hair already, so I guess all I need is a white lab coat and a pocket protector full of pens...
    Birnam wood is come to Dunsinane

  10. #10
    From space with love silver trophy
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    Bringing this thread back on topic, my guess is that many sites don't validate (probably where they have even the slightest bit of user generated content), the main (home) pages of SitePoint don't validate with the exception of the reference section which does not have any user-generated content AFAIK. I tried a one site and the validator came back reporting 4154 Errors, 395 warning(s) one of those is a lack of doctype error (having a valid doctype will probably fix a good few of them straight away).

    Viewing source and looking at the html i think yuck, css and javascript mixed in with. I personally think that sites should have their javascript and css in external files. With tabbing used to make the HTML more readable using a table as an example:

    HTML Code:
    <table>
        <tr>
            <th>
                Heading
            </th>
            <th>
                Heading
            </th>
        </tr>
        <tr>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
        </tr>
        <tr>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
        </tr>
    </table>
    By formatting like that it makes it easier to read.
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  11. #11
    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    Correct, that is the general consensus point of view. I think most people on here would agree with what you have said. Though how easy your code is to read is more down to personal preference as opposed to something which is extremely important to the website itself.

  12. #12
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    You left out some of the most important tags in the table example:


    Code:
    <table>
    <thead>
        <tr>
            <th>
                Heading
            </th>
            <th>
                Heading
            </th>
        </tr>
    </thead><tbody>
        <tr>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
        </tr>
        <tr>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
        </tr>
    </tbody>
    </table>
    Having the right tags there is far more important than how you format it since feeding it through HTMLtidy will reformat it for you.

    Also it allows browsers that properly handle the standards to print the heading at the top of each page if the table prints over more than one page.
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  13. #13
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophybronze trophy
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    html 4.01 already provides these without explicitly stating them. xhtml on the other hand does not.

  14. #14
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cooper.semantics View Post
    html 4.01 already provides these without explicitly stating them. xhtml on the other hand does not.
    No. HTML would assume a <tbody> around all the table content. The <thead> needs to be explicitly included if you want to identify the heading row as being a heading.
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  15. #15
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    If the <thead> is added explicitly then the <tbody> will be added after.

  16. #16
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    Quoted from 'The Ultimate CSS Reference'
    "Whereas HTML regards the tbody element tags as optional (thereby making them implicit), the XHTML specification states that a table must contain either one or more tbody elements, or one or more tr elements (after any optional caption, col, colgroup, thead, and tfoot elements).

  17. #17
    SitePoint Enthusiast Aken's Avatar
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    This is something that's been debated on countless web design-related communities.

    I think the general consensus is to only mention validated code when you think your user base will care. Though with recent things like Firefox extensions that check validity, even then it's almost pointless. If a person wants to know, they will find out, and do it pretty quickly.

    I stuck a link on my site where it claims to be valid, but allows the person to click and check for themselves. (Please let me know if something's not valid so I can fix it, haha!)
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by cooper.semantics View Post
    Quoted from 'The Ultimate CSS Reference'
    "Whereas HTML regards the tbody element tags as optional (thereby making them implicit), the XHTML specification states that a table must contain either one or more tbody elements, or one or more tr elements (after any optional caption, col, colgroup, thead, and tfoot elements).
    According to the sitepoint html reference <thead> and <tbody> are only partially supported by all browsers.

    The below, when used with an XHTML Strict doctype passes with or without <thead> and <tbody> so <thead> and <tbody> can't be that important or I would have expected validation to fail without them.

    HTML Code:
    <table>
    <thead>
        <tr>
            <th>
                Heading
            </th>
            <th>
                Heading
            </th>
        </tr>
    </thead><tbody>
        <tr>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
        </tr>
        <tr>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
            <td>
                Data
            </td>
        </tr>
    </tbody>
    </table>
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  19. #19
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophybronze trophy
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    (after any optional caption, col, colgroup, thead, and tfoot elements).

  20. #20
    @alexstanford Alex's Avatar
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    I must say that I have added text links in the footer of technology/web related websites to W3C validation pages, but I've never inserted a sticker.
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  21. #21
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophybronze trophy
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    @SpacePhoenix

    What that quote meant was:
    If you have a <thead> for example and leave out the <tbody> then your page will validate with errors if your serving your page as real xhtml.

    Also the validator checks for well formed documents, not semantically correct documents. So yes you could leave out <thead> <tbody> and your page would still validate...

  22. #22
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpacePhoenix View Post
    According to the sitepoint html reference <thead> and <tbody> are only partially supported by all browsers.
    You mean current browsers - by writing it properly now you allow for future browsers than do fully support it to handle it correctly without having to go back and rewrite all your pages. Including the appropriate tags in your HTML helps future proof the page so that it will collect the new functionality automatically as browsers comply more closely to the standards.
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  23. #23
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    Er..back to the original subject...

    Whenever I see those stickers (which is rarely) I think they do it only to show off. No one really cares if they are valid anyway. You shouldn't code to standards just to have the option of putting an ugly sticker on your site.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by a2K View Post
    Er..back to the original subject...

    Whenever I see those stickers (which is rarely) I think they do it only to show off. No one really cares if they are valid anyway. You shouldn't code to standards just to have the option of putting an ugly sticker on your site.
    Agreed. And I always find it funny when people don't consider maintaining valid code after they complete the site design, yet they keep the sticker at their page. Plus, in my opinion, they're really ugly! There's only a few situations where I could think that the stickers are acceptable.

  25. #25
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophybronze trophy
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    Valid pages - well formed pages..

    A majority of the pages that have the 'valid icons' are semantically incorrect pages.

    e.g.
    <div class="heading">heading</div>
    instead of:
    <hx>Heading</hx>

    Validation to me is to make sure I closed all my tags(when on a tight deadline).

    I mean if you have those icons on your page your saying: "Daddy look I tied my shoe" when your over 20 years old


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