Web Development -- A Skill

November 23, 2008 by Noah
I have a major pet peeve about awful program code. Code that's terribly written, has terrible logic, or is just really messy. I can't stand having to read it, or worse, write it (like when changing the code style would totally break stuff).

Right now, my page doesn't validate as HTML 4.01 Strict, because <script> tags aren't allowed to have a id attribute. What script tag has the ID attribute? The one to display the countdown until Fedora 10's release. If I remove the ID attribute, the script breaks. Nonetheless I'm going to keep it there only for the next three days until Fedora 10 finally arrives, then it's history and next time I want to count down until Fedora 11, I'll find my own implementation instead of pasting their awful HTML code into my otherwise perfect pages.

I've ranted about pasting external code into my site before, so I'll spare you any continued rambling for now. Sometime when I'm more motivated I might follow up on this rant with a sequel.

The moral of the story is, don't give me any code to paste anywhere in anything I have unless the code is completely valid and passes all validation tests (for HTML, that means it passes HTML 4.01 Strict standards).

Speaking of which, I wanted to say a little something about web development. Why have a degree in web design?, some people ask. Any 12-year-old can open Notepad and create a web page. I agree -- and I was that 12-year-old at one point in my life. What separates the men from the boys is the ability to create a web page that validates against the W3C's strictest standards. Yeah, any little kid can throw together a mess of HTML tags and get something out of it. They might even be lucky enough that their page works on every browser. But I've heard enough crying and complaining about how the W3C doesn't validate their page, how they get errors in the triple digits or worse whenever they try to validate their code.

So that's why web development is a skill and not a hobby. With the exception of the Fedora banner (which I highly regret embedding), all my pages on this site and every other site I develop, they all validate HTML 4.01 Strict. Not Transitional -- Strict. That means the W3C doesn't take any shit from my pages whatsoever. And that, my critics, is what sets me apart from the 12-year-olds with Notepad.



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