We need a new kind of web browser.

March 26, 2006

There’s an [excellent article at A List Apart ](http://www.alistapart.com/articles/forgiving) on the drawbacks of ‘forgiving’ browsers.

Written by [J. David Eisenberg](http://www.alistapart.com/authors/e/jdavideisenberg) it talks about how browsers that ‘forgive’ badly coded pages actually hinder the progression towards a structured web based on XHTML and XML.

>Current browsers are very forgiving; they quietly correct or gloss over many common HTML errors. This makes it easy for people to experience the joy of creating their own web pages with a minimum of frustration – if a page displays correctly, then it’s “right.”

>Unfortunately, by hiding the need for structure that the web will require as it moves towards XHTML and XML, these forgiving browsers have helped create a world of structural HTML illiterates. As long as browsers continue to parse and display HTML that isn’t well-formed or valid, we will never learn the right ways, and we will never get to a structural web.

A worthwhile read for anyone involved in web design and development and especially those teaching web design.

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