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W3C Advances Mobile Web Development

David A. Utter
Staff Writer
Published: 2006-06-29

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The World Wide Web Consortium has promoted its Mobile Web Best Practices 1.0 for website and content management system designers to Candidate Recommendation status.

Thirty industry-leading companies have endorsed the new guidelines for delivering web content to mobile devices, the W3C recently announced. Implementation of these guidelines should foster improvement of the user experience when viewing the Web on mobile devices.

In the "Mobile Web Best Practices 1.0" document, advice from those endorsing companies on creating content for mobiles that is easy to browse describes how to avoid "known pitfalls, such as pop-ups and page-scrolling," W3C said.

They have launched a best practices checker online for site publishers to use. The checker allows a site URL to be entered and assessed for its conformity with the Mobile Web Best Practices.

That checker is still in alpha mode, and does not cover all of the best practices yet. It may not work properly on all websites, and will slow down on sites with a lot of links. The checker expects well-formed site code with valid XHTML in place to generate the best results.

The process for crafting the document into its final form will benefit from feedback from web developers everywhere. W3C established a wiki to collect that feedback about mobile web best practices.

Opera Software, a developer of desktop and mobile browsers, joined several other endorsing companies in applauding the advancement of the Best Practices document.

"While the best mobile browsers can provide a great internet experience for any content, it is more efficient and more effective when content has been designed to take account of basic design requirements, and these guidelines will help authors to ensure that their content works as well as possible on the entire Internet," said Charles McCathie Nevile, Opera's chief standards officer.

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About the Author:
David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.

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