W3C updates validation service

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) this week released an update of its W3C Markup Validation Service and the accompanying Markup Validator, for checking documents such as HTML and XHTML files for conformance to W3C recommendations and other standards.

Included in the upgrade are more accessible interfaces, support for more document types, better internationalization support, a "beefed up" Tip of the Day, and major internal restructuring.

Validation Service code has undergone significant re-factoring, yielding many benefits, according to W3C. Code is now more readable and easier to understand and the service is more secure, more modular, and performance should be significantly better, W3C said. There is tentative support for running under mod_perl, to lead to even greater performance enhancements. Memory consumption should be much improved.

New document types are supported and support for existing document types is improved. Notable changes and additions include support for application/xhtml+xml, XHTML+MathML, XHTML+MathML+SVG, and SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics 1.0). Also supported are XHTML 1.0 Second Edition and XHTML 1.1.

The Validator enables developers to certify the correct usage of XML, according to W3C spokeswoman Janet Daly.

"What makes this interesting is that for years, people have talked about one of the benefits of XML as being the ability to combine different document types into one document. So what you can do with the Validator now is you can make one of these compound documents and make sure what you did is valid," Daly said.

WC3 has made output easier to understand, and bug fixes are included. The Validation Service is available at http://validator.w3.org.

W3C this week also announced it is changing its European host from the National Institute for Research in Computer Science and Control (INRIA), in France, to the European Research Consortium for Informatics and Mathematics (ERCIM), also in France. The change is intended to enable W3C to better leverage research relationships throughout Europe while maintaining a strong relationship with INRIA, which is an ERCIM founder. ERCIM is a network of 16 labs in the European Union.

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