Friday, March 16, 2007

Web Standards Part 1 : What are web standards?

There is a lot of talk about web standards within the web community but to business owners talk of web standards is like double-dutch. This article will give the low down on what these technologies are and how they relate to your web business.

When we refer to web standards, we are referring to open standards primarily used on the World Wide Web. These standards are laid out by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).

“The W3C is a consortium that produces the free software standards—"recommendations," as they call them—for the World Wide Web. The Consortium is headed by Tim Berners-Lee, the original creator of URL, HTTP and HTML, the principal technologies that form the basis of the Web.”

Source: Wikipedia

However when we talk to web standards we are more often then not referring to the following technologies.

* DOM (Document Object Model)
* ECMAScript (Standardized Version of JavaScript)

These technologies will form the basis for web applications for years to come and any site built using them with be future proofed for a considerable time. It’s a nice feeling when you know your site will look good in Internet Explorer 15 as it does now.

Designing and building with these standards simplifies and lowers the cost of production, while delivering sites that are accessible to more people and more types of Internet devices. Sites developed along these lines will continue to function correctly as traditional desktop browsers evolve, and as new Internet devices come to market.

Source: The Web Standards Project

To read part 2 of this series on web standards entitled "The business benefits of designing with web standards " visit

About the Author

Gary is the founder of and has been developing websites since 1999. Visit for more articles and tutorials on web standards, css and accessibility.