Web Standards = Money

I work in a company. As you'd expect our company aims to make money - lots of money. Clients come, clients go, finances fluctuate like the weather and failure isn't an attractive option. In the thick of this ongoing search for her majesty's finest are standards. I like standards, in fact I love them. Additionally, like you (I'm guessing), my work must be as near to perfect as possible before I am truly happy.

Now we've all heard the phrase "time equals money", and web standards take time to implement correctly. Do you see where I'm heading? Web Standards = Money.

A wise man should have money in his head, but not in his heart. - Jonathan Swift

So where do we draw the line between the search for money and the search for creative perfection? With certain aspects of standardisation this is not a problem, in fact it's a benefit. Take CSS for example. A CSS based website or application is quicker to create and many, many times easier to update. On the other hand take JavaScript and the DOM. Doing a good job and completely separating structure from behaviour takes time and thought - it is far easier accomplished with inline event handlers to the same effect. As professionals what level should we be achieving in our work? And how does this compare to what we actually achieve?

Dated: 15/06/2006. Filed under: Web Design.


On 16th June 2006 Elessar said:
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Well, the better your work, the more money you 'should' make or at least thats the logic that comes to my mind.
On 16th June 2006 Steve Tucker said:
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Sadly that's not always the case. I know a number of development agencies in my area whose work is not of a very high standard, yet because they have been in business since the 90s they get heaps of work. Its kinda frustrating really.
On 16th June 2006 Rik Lomas said:
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Steve, it's the same with any service-based businesses. You just have to look at how many 'cowboy' builders there are out there. Just as they should be building to their standards, so should we, as professionals. Just remember to feel good that you're providing a high quality service!
On 19th June 2006 Damien said:
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Just because a ton of work goes into something doesn't always mean you'll reap the benefits... People go straight for the cheapest easiest way out of something, no matter what it is... Or so it seems like that in the world we live.

All though what you're saying is true, it unfortunately does not always matter.
On 8th March 2008 notorious said:
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The only reason that people like yourself 'love' standards is because you have too much time on your hands, pull your finger out and get busy! And stop being so stuck up, just do the job to a satisfactory standard, rather than pretentiously aiming for perfection.
On 11th March 2008 Steve Tucker said:
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Believe me, I don't have too much time on my hands - hence this article. Aiming for perfection depends on the importance of the project, who you're working for, and the amount of time available. If conditions are right then it's not at all pretentious to aim for perfection if you take enough pride in your work.

Also I don't 'love' standards any more (web design has since lost its novelty) - they're just part of the job.

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