SXSWi: WaSP Annual Meeting: Don’t Break the Web

WaSP Panel

Kimberly Blessing, Derek Featherstone (not in the photo), Chris Wilson, Glenda Sims (UT), Stephanie Sullivan. Pre-panel slide show was all the people in the blue stocking caps (a la Zeldman) for web standards.

Kimberly gave a review of the 10 years of WaSP.

Steph talked about the role that Adobe is going to take in adding educational material to the WaSP site for teaching people who use Adobe products how to do it with web standards.

Glenda described the bookmark project. It is an attempt to put bookmarks in books when they teach outdated material. Especially library books. Then refer relevant educational material to the reader. She described how the WaSP International Liaison Group putting web standards into 21 languages in 32 countries.

Chris said that more than half of the web is now in standards mode, but Microsoft will have some problems getting IE8 to work as a standards compliant browser. (They promised!)

Kimberly asked the audience to come to the mic with ideas for where WaSP should be going. One guy said that WaSP should take risks and allow browser makers to implement new features. Someone else pointed out that the standards don’t prevent you from doing that. There was discussion about whether that message is balanced.

Another suggestion was a more aggressive program aimed at teachers to bring them up to date.

Another speaker said there aren’t enough collaborative resources all in one bundle where you can point learners and educators. Kimberly said they had thought about taking the learn part of the website and turning it into a Wiki. The audience member said it might be good to contact local educators and tell them where they can get help.

One comment was that Acid 3 is a great improvement over Acid 2. He thinks the group responsible for Acid 3 could zoom out a little and make their focus wider. Kimberly mentioned that Acid 3 isn’t a task force. So the commenter said that maybe that was the suggestion. Make Acid 3 a task force.

There’s discussion going on in a Meebo chat room about the questions. I have completely overlooked mentioning Meebo at SXSW this year. They provide a chat room via Meebo for any panel that wants it. Right now Aaron Gustafson is talking about IE 8 in Meebo while Chris Wilson comments on Acid Tests on the mic.

Next idea. A lot of learning happens on the web but not with books. It would be nice to have a WaSP approved badge that could identify articles that are still best practices. Glenda agreed that online materials need to be vetted.

Next idea. What about having search engines index bad code?

Next idea. CSS3 is so huge. How can WaSP help with that implementation?

My idea: Can WaSP help convince vendor and affiliate organizations to generate valid HTML for use on blogs and websites?

Just wanted to point out to Skye, who commented on this post, that when the topic of IE 8 came up, Glenda leaned over and gave Chris a kiss.

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