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Google Could Change the Web For the Better
If they could be bothered

 8:06 am on Apr 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

No another one of my, “I don’t start Google threads” but a thought occurred to me this morning.

We all know the resources that Google have at their disposal and the resources soon to be coming their way. Well why don’t they make the web a standards compliant place with strong steps towards accessibility.

Here is how I see it, get their own house in order (valid code, at least some level of accessibility) and then start to reward webmasters with valid and accessible websites. The vast majority would do it in a flash. Of course people would moan, so what, they moan when there is an update, they moan when their site is not #1, it would just be a little extra moaning :).

Come on Google make the web a nice place to play. The same goes for your people over at Yahoo and you lot at MSN.




 11:50 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

I suppose that the way to "fix" this without google having to do this is to tell anyone that wants to exchange links with you, that you will only swap links with sites that validate.

If enough webmasters do this, then it will not matter what google does, as all the validating pages will get links a lot easier than the pages that do not validate. . . unless of course they have really good content and the rest of us link to them anyway.


 12:45 am on May 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

If the code is messed up enough to potentially crash my browser then they would be doing me a great service by telling me about that in advance.

That's a pretty big "if." I can't even remember the last time I encountered a page that crashed my browser. Besides, how is Google going to know if a page's code is messed up enough to crash my browser?

Let's see....If we're going to ask Google to warn of pages with unvalidated code, let's go all the way and request warnings for:

- Pages that play sounds

- Pages that display interstitial ads

- Pages with animations

- Pages with more than X% of their screen real estate devoted to ads

- Pages that contain "Michael Jackson," "Britney Spears," "American Idol," "The Passion of the Christ," or any of the other phrases that I'm sick of encountering when I go looking for news on the Web. :-)


 3:25 am on May 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

>But isn't Google's mission the enslavement of humanity as much as Microsoft's?

I see you've been trained at the "George Bush is Hitler in Drag" School of Making Fine Distinctions.

I am persuaded that there are companies that believe they can make a profit by making sure their customers profit from every purchase. I have worked for several, and "how can we make this better for the customer" was a recurrent question.

And there are companies that believe they can't make a profit unless they've stolen their customer blind, cut off his air supply, and stolen the obols off of his eyes. I have been fortunate not to work for such companies.

And there are some companies that haven't quite made up their mind where to draw the ethical lines. I have worked where there were at least rumors of shady dealing, although much of it might charitably have been attributed to incompetance.

I suppose my impression might have different if I had been closer to the marketroid types. But even among marketroids there are some (and I speak from close second-hand experience here) that will lie and cheat on product tests, and some that will go out of their way to make sure that you know what they are doing so they couldn't cheat if they wanted to.

Google is, I'm persuaded, doing what they think (1) is valuable to someone, and (2) they can do better than anyone else, so that (3) they can make money without obol-stealing. I think Intuit thinks the same way.

Microsoft (read the Halloween memos!) knows perfectly well that what they do is an economic millstone around the necks of every client, which any idiot off the turnip truck can do better (they are scared stiff of competition from un-Americans and other untouchables) and their only paths to profit lie through fraud and coercion. SCO, insofar as it can wag without Microsoft's gluteal muscles being involved, is trying to be more evil than Microsoft.

AOL lies somewhere in the middle: they have moments of what could be considered public vision, and they have unrealistic notions of how much people will pay them because they are AOL -- that schizoid approach will lead to problems. And I think IBM lies somewhere in the middle: their marketing tactics in the past have been, um, criminal -- but there exists there concept of providing service for money that cannot be contemned by honest people.

The Godfather says "I'm just like all other businessmen" and by that you know nothing about OTHER businessmen, but you know all you need to know about the Godfather.

A word of advice to all prudent people: don't EVER do business with anyone that says all businessmen are equally evil -- except at the point of a gun.


 8:36 am on May 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

>>I am against this due to the fact that
>>my pages would never validate.

Then do something about it then :).

Another thing I did mention but I was thinking while I typed the original post was that Google cant be arsed to validate themselved. I cant be that difficult, what is hte quote 50 phds. Well set one of them to work on the template :)

There was a thread on WebmasterWorld that showed who did and did nto validate.


Clearly things have changed since then.


 12:58 pm on May 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

>>I am against this due to the fact that
>>my pages would never validate.
Then do something about it then :).

Nahh, really my pages are useable enough and have enough reach {work well enough with ie and Opera} for me to be happy about them. I would much rather spend my time reading this forum :)

I see you've been trained at the "George Bush is Hitler in Drag" School of Making Fine Distinctions.

I have nothing to say about the above, just wanted to quote it as I thought that sentence was funny and made me smile.


 1:34 pm on May 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

I'm curious as to how many people even give a crap if their pages validate or not. I know I'm one who doesn't - in fact I don't know ANYONE in real life who does. I also know a lot of people who aren't satisfied with the standard and think it should either be changed or done away with.

Maybe this would be better in a new thread?


 3:02 pm on May 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

They are only limiting if you don't know how to code them in a compliant way in the first place. Everything you can put on a page can be made compliant without losing functionality.

>>I am against this due to the fact that
>>my pages would never validate.

Then do something about it then .

My grandma is sitting here crying her wrinkly eyes out. She wants me to ask you if you will please make her pages do this 'validate' thing, because, she says, 'please God I don't want to be taken off the web'....

[tounge removed from cheek - smile]


 3:04 pm on May 4, 2004 (gmt 0)


I really find it hilarious that you are pusing hard for validation op markup, but you don't even proofread your posts.

I normally don't comment on things like spelling and punctuation in a forum, because it just doesn't matter all that much. I prefer to look at the content of what is written. But the irony of you being concerned with the least important part of a page (formatting), while ignoring the most important (content), is just too much to pass up.

Then do something about it then .
Another thing I did
't mention, but I was thinking, while I typed the original post, was that Google can't be arsed to validate themselveds.

I cant be that difficult, what is hte quote 50 phds. Well set one of them to work on the template

There was a thread on WebmasterWorld that showed who did and did nto validate.

[edited by: BigDave at 3:06 pm (utc) on May 4, 2004]


 3:05 pm on May 4, 2004 (gmt 0)


at least your Grandmother is willing to try. That is a step in the right direction. If she has trouble tell her to sign up here. Lots of people will be willing to help.


 3:40 pm on May 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

I thought that Google's primary function/service (their "one" thing) was to help people find sites on the web that have what they want. When did that change to defining (dictating) how people should put things on the web?

The more open the web is to contributions by non-web programmers and designers, the more open it will need to be in regard to pages that are not compliant with the latest standards.

Don't try to make life so complicated. Deal with the mish-mash of the current web. Revel in it. In 10 years it will be history and you will want to talk about the good ol' days when publishing to the world was free.


 5:32 pm on May 9, 2004 (gmt 0)

Since this has turned into more of a W3C argument than what should Google's position be argument, I started a new thread:



 8:58 am on May 10, 2004 (gmt 0)

BigDave behave :)

My spelling, or rather typing ability are neither here nor there. I come into this thread at various times and from different computers and as such my proof reading lacks somewhat. I also have time contraints when I am at some locations. However, I can show you a site where there will be little errors and WAI AAA compliance if you want :)


 6:00 pm on May 10, 2004 (gmt 0)


So, you are saying that you should not have to be concerned about the standard rules (spelling and grammar), and that we should be more concerned with the content of what you are trying to say?

If that is your point, then I would have to agree with you. That is why I generally don't worry about such things when I read posts on various forums, the content of the message is far more important than minor formatting issues.

In fact, I believe that is the point that some of us are trying to make. Some of the most brilliant researchers I know put up really rushed, crappy websites. I would be shocked if any of them validate. But like you, with your typing problems, they are just trying to get the information out there, and simply can't be bothered with correcting something that is unseen (their HTML works, but it does not validate).


 6:27 pm on May 10, 2004 (gmt 0)

its not Googles job to change the web....Google should aim to be an open window to the web....its much like a science project where observing a subject tends to affect the subject....the hardest thing is to make a quantative measurement without affecting that which you are trying to measure...

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