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March 12, 2004

“Web Designing with FrontPage, will make you a web designer, like Microsoft Word will allow you to become Steinbeck.” – Me.

I guess this is more of an evolution of a rant, than one of my full-on rages against the machines. The quote above, was something that just came outta me in an elevator. I was discussing a project with a writer friend of mine, mainly based on a Dilbert cartoon (where the phb, designs a logo)…but more focused on how “anyone can become a ‘web designer’”.

That quote above hasn’t evolved, but the meaning of it has. We can all use tools to perform a job, but our skill in that job is more important. Steinbeck could sit down and write on anything and it would probably be great while I could sit down and type/pound out utter crap. We’re using the same tools, but the skill levels are different.

I guess the “rant” part of this, was from seeing a couple of web design jobs going to a FrontPage shop. Bad coding, horrible design, spelling errors, etc. Not saying I’m the greatest, I’m far from it. But it’s taken years to develop my eye and learning what looks bad vs good. And to see people funding poor skills, just make me kinda sick.

Part of those good skills involve using web standards. They’re in the tool kit, I use for every job. I’m not turning phillips-head screws with a dull flat-head screwdriver, but that’s what a lot people are doing. That’s what the Dave Winers, Chris Prillos, and oh boy, the Microsofts are doing. As long as you get the job done, does it matter what tool you use? Um, yes. Yes it does.

Coding with Web Standards is like using the correct screwdriver for the job. You’re not gonna strip the screws, by using the proper screwdriver and you’ll make it better for the people who also work on that piece later. Web Standards support accessibility, various browsers, and *everyone*. Coding to support the “most used”, is selfish.

** notes ** 4pm – Let me add, that I wrote this before I saw this: ATOM vs. RSS

Wow, really similar…completely unplanned.