New website (inspired by the "Website layout" thread)

Jeroen Ruigrok/asmodai asmodai at
Fri Feb 6 00:09:42 PST 2004

-On [20040206 07:52], Amar Takhar (verm at xxxxxxxxxxxxx) wrote:
>Why SGML?
>A few reasons:
>* The SGML HTML DTD will do offline-HTML syntax checking.
>* Static website (improves speed).
>* Site layout in CVS is exactly the same as WWW.
>* DSSSL backend provides the ability to add advanced features.

XML+XSLT+XHTML would be a better avenue to follow.

>General HTML:
>* The website is now backwards compatible to first generation browsers, while 
>  some people see this as unimportant, I'd like to say a few things on this 
>  subject:
>	- A lot of people still use first generation browsers

Nobody who matters.  General available statistics on the Internet show
that even version 4 browsers and lower are dropping below the 1%
ballmark _combined_.  Not to mention that v4 and down have security
holes too numerous to mention.

>	- Advanced CSS takes a while to compile (even on modern browsers)

Depends on the complexity of the CSS you create.

>	- It makes things look very broken for text-only browsers

Can't see anything that's broken.

>	- Advanced CSS is brutal for people using teleprompters for the blind

Not necessarily so.  Even normal HTML sites can be cumbersome for the
disabled (you have left out large other groups).  CSS can still be used.
Disability needs to be kept in mind for the entire design.

>	- This is a technical site, not
>* The site looks far better in text-only browsers. (eg, w3m
> vs w3m

Viewing in links and/or w3m doesn't show any problems
for me and the site is easy to use.

>Search engine enhancements:
>* added meta keywords
>* added meta http-equiv content type
>* any URLs ending in *.cgi are normally NOT indexed by search engines, 
>  this is very bad, as they assume it is dynamic content -- while some 
>  search engines are smart enough to figure this out, most are not.


>* Lowercase is far better for the URLs, as this is a technical site, 
>  most people will be typing in the locations by hand, thus uppercase is 
>  annoying.


>Added features:
>* CGI to handle error documents (found in /error, /cgi/error.cgi,
>thanks petef!)

You can of course also use static pages for this, which would have made
more sense given your stance towards static pages.  If you find the
referring URL information useful I wonder how much it adds for a small

>* Site map -- this is *VERY* important, to help those users who are not sure 
>  what they are looking for, it allows you to link various areas of the site 
>  using alternate names.

Depends on the size of your site, in my opinion.  The current site is
hardly that big that people will get lost.

>* Static pages are cool.

It has pros and cons.  Coolness factor is not relevant.

To sum it up: some parts coulds/should be changed, some others I would
advise strongly against them.

Jeroen Ruigrok van der Werven <asmodai(at)> / asmodai / kita no mono
PGP fingerprint: 2D92 980E 45FE 2C28 9DB7  9D88 97E6 839B 2EAC 625B   |
Do not write so that you can be understood, write so that you cannot be

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