HTML and CSS Reference
Figure 1-4. Many involved in web design do not know web standards at all
In 2014, another test series indicated a much higher share of HTML5 with UTF-8 encoding (approx. 95%), while
standard compliance was still an issue with not only the markup, but incorrect implementation such as that of vendor-
specific CSS3 properties in the style sheets. The large number of markup errors (max. 875) and CSS errors (max. 750)
is a clear indication that the implementation of web standards did not improve over the years and that many web
content authors and web designers do not know what they are doing.
Many people publishing on the Web are content authors rather than web designers, and only very few web
designers are experts in web standards. The majority of web content authors do not even know the underlying
technologies and standards, not to mention the best practices to implement those standards. Expectations
do not force people to apply web technologies and standards correctly, and the lack of consensus makes the
Web chaotic. Compared to programming languages such as C, the Web is an error-tolerant environment. This
featuresimplifies web publishing to the extent that everyone can create web pages without solid web design
skills (through content management and templates), but without web quality assurance, often resulting in bad
quality code .
Companies desire a professional appearance to sell their products and often focus on design and marketing
exclusively. In most cases, designers know little if anything about web standardization. Without knowing the potential
inherent in web standards, people won't make the effort to create standard-compliant web sites.
Incorrect or incomplete standard implementations of web browsers are responsible for further problems in
web standardization. Even standardized web sites might break apart in browsers that do not support web standards
fully and correctly. Optimal rendering can be expected only if standards are implemented correctly by both browser
vendors and web designers.
Web publishing is often oversimplified, and only a very limited number of web designers are hand coders, which
is a major key to standardized web development. Since content authors need content management via graphical
interfaces and dynamic content, proper standards implementations in authoring tools and templates could contribute
to web standardization significantly. For example, if a standard-compliant WordPress template is deployed, the code
quality of the empty site is inherently standard-compliant, but someone without proper skills can break this standard
compliance with a single character. While the markup quality of web site templates have improved in recent years, the
cutting edge CSS3 implementations are usually still not standard-compliant.
Beyond a certain point, markup and style sheet errors cannot be tolerated. Web documents full of errors
often contain improperly nested elements, malformed tags, and other markup errors referred to as tag soup . Tables
should be used only for organizing data, not for layout or design. Missing tags should not be tolerated. Bad markup
extends download time and rendering time since processing the errors is more complicated than rendering
error-free, standard-compliant (valid) code. Efficiency can be boosted by optimizing the code. Accessibility can also
be increased, along with cross-browser compatibility and forward compatibility.