The HTML and CSS syntax have been around for long enough that several standards have evolved. The HTML 4.01 specification available on the World Wide Web Consortium's site reached recommendation status on December 24, 1999. More recent specifications, such as XHTML 1.0, bring additional values to the party, like a predictable document object model. It's far more important to use a specification consistently on a site than to debate which one to employ.
DotNetNuke has made strides toward compliance in their default installation. Earlier versions contained more issues than later versions. I anticipate DotNetNuke will make a shift to full web standards compliance over time. As you'll see later on in this chapter, DotNetNuke can be customized to achieve a web standards-based architecture today.
The popularity of DotNetNuke and the vast market for third-party components can also work against a developer and make it difficult to maintain a standards-based system. Envision a graph where the X axis represents the number of unique modules on a DotNetNuke site and the Y axis represents the work exerted to maintain a standards-compliant site. My hypothesis is the line is not flat and probably not even linear. Web standards are not critical to every software vendor — if you don't intend to have guests over, why bother cleaning the house?
This chapter aims to describe standards-based architectures in greater detail. Chapter 5 introduced related topics including ...