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"Bad Code" indicator

Discourage dodgy code by telling people how bad it is.
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// This browser update is more reliable for 'tricky' pages... //

The web is awash with bad HTML. A browser that attempts to refuse to show them will be labelled a bad browser, while one that allows (and therefore encourages) bad code is somehow seen as better.

I suggest a little item on the toolbar that uses ranks every page you look at. Customers will be unimpressed with your site if it's accompanied by a big red flashing thing that says "This page is badly coded."

If only the same could be done for actual design...

sadie, Jul 15 2002

W3C HTML Validation Service http://validator.w3.org/
[angel, Jul 15 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

Web Lint Gateway http://ejk.cso.uiuc.edu/cgi-bin/weblint
Who says that a Lint for HTML does not exist? [Aristotle, Jul 15 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

finally baked http://users.skynet.be/mgueury/mozilla/
as a firefox plug in [neilp, Mar 03 2005]

[link]






       "Lint" for HTML ?
8th of 7, Jul 15 2002
  

       // W3C HTML Validation Service //   

       I know tools exist for checking HTML. That's part of what inspired it. But the fact is that most web authors just don't bother. My idea is to force them to bother by shaming them on every client's computer.
sadie, Jul 15 2002
  

       Sorry, I wasn't suggesting that this was baked in any way. I was simply agreeing that there's no reason for code to be 'bad' because it's so easy to check.
angel, Jul 15 2002
  

       Many html editors have syntax checkers (well, the one I use does, anyway), as well as previews of how the page looks in a real browser. If a designer is too lazy or incompetent to use these tools, I fail to see where big red flashing things will make any difference at all. I mean, some of these people put big red flashing things on their pages deliberately.
DrCurry, Jul 15 2002
  

       Bad code doesn't always correspond to bad design. Some companies that can afford to hire expensive designers still produce incredibly dodgy code. Online banks, for instance, tend to flop in any non-standard browser.   

       A coder - or automatic code generator - will often be too lazy themselves, but if their customers start asking them what this "bad code" wibbly up here in the corner is, they may be forced to change.   

       Remember also, that a lot of bad code is created automatically. A nanny page designer that habitually made mistakes would lose customers as a result, if the pages it produced got flagged with this.
sadie, Jul 15 2002
  

       Actually, the best driver for this process are the end users, complaining to the site in question that they cannot see it properly. (Which I hope you do as a good Internet citizen when you encounter browsing problems.)
DrCurry, Jul 15 2002
  

       Do bank site ever suck?!! It must be their plague as late adopters of the consumer-driven web model. I can't wait for the fun I expect to find dealing with general insurers when I find they've adopted online transactions. (You guess that mine still hasn't, you're right.)
reensure, Jul 15 2002
  

       It would be useful for browsers to optionally display html error messages for pages (rather, say, than simply going blank). Perhaps they already do?
DrCurry, Jul 15 2002
  

       now baked, but not widely-known-to-exist as a firefox plugin (see link).
neilp, Mar 03 2005
  

       Wouldn't an XHTML compliant browser be, by definition, intolerant of non-complying pages?   

       In any case, unless I were somehow very interested in how a site were coded, I'd much prefer a browser that is tolerant--highly tolerant--of HTML error. I want the best user experience and one that accomodates amateurish or naive markup. There are a lot of people with important things to say that haven't the skills for writing HTML.   

       I feel differently about commerce or financial sites, though. In those cases I want absolute assurance (transactional behavior, etc.) but want that assurance to come from the user experience rather than my trying to assess the site with a tool that can only examine the client-side tip of the iceberg.
bristolz, Mar 03 2005
  

       I'd like a web browser whose Back button works NO MATTER WHAT. Even if the web page sends your financial numbers to the KGB and tells your girlfriend that you still wet the bed, I want to be able to go back, darnit!   

       I can't stand it when I click the back button and nothing happens, even though I am not on the first page.
Amishman35, Jan 22 2006
  

       [Druze], I'm not Amish, and I don't care if [Amishman35] is either... all I can say is that I'm with him 1,000%.   

       Any user interface that has a thing like a "back" button that continues to display as enabled but won't actually do it is just garbage. Why that little detail of browsers doesn't get addressed is beyond me. (... and I make part of my living writing software).   

       Good call, [Amishman]!   

       Note: I'm aware that the back button in IE 6.0 will grey out when there is no page to go back to, but the part about how the back button can be interupted by a page is still a serious issue in my opinion.
zigness, Jan 23 2006
  
      
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