From: Philippe Verdy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Sun Nov 21 2004 - 16:39:09 CST
From: "E. Keown" <email@example.com>
> Dear Doug Ewell, fantasai and List:
> I will try to sort out these diverse pieces of advice.
> What's the point, really, of going far beyond, even
> beyond CSS, into XHTML, where few computational
> Hebraists have gone before?
You're right Helen, the web is full of non XHTML conforming documents. You
probably don't need full XHTML conformance too, but having your document
respect the XML nesting and closure of elements is certainly a must today,
because it avoids most interoperability problems in browsers.
So: make sure all your HTML elements and attributes are lowercase, and close
ALL elements (even empty elements that should be closed by " />" instead of
just ">", for example <br /> instead of <br>, and even <li>...</li>, or
And then don't embed structural block elements
(like <p>...</p> or <div>..</div> or <blockquote>...</blockquote>
or <li>...</li> or <table>...</table>)
within inline elements
(like <b>...</b> or <font>...</font> or ...
Note that most inline elements are related to style, and they better fit
outside of the body by assigning style classes to the structural elements
(most of them are block elements).
XHTML has deprecated most inline style elements, in favor of external
specification of style through the class property added to structural block
elements. XHTML has an excellent interoperability with a wider range of
browsers, including old ones, except for the effective rendering of some CSS
The cost to convert an HTML file to full XML well-formedness is minor for
you, but this allows you to use XML editors to make sure the document is
properly nested, a pre-condition that will greatly help its interoperable
If you have FrontPage XP or 2003, you can use its "apply XML formatting
rules" option to make this job nearly automatically, and make sure that all
elements are properly nested and closed.
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