Why You Need To Upgrade Your Old HTML Site to XHTML
By: Gail Notestine, CGAP
HTML was a great site markup language, in its time. It allowed us to use mixed-
case tags. (<body> and <BODY> were the same) It permitted unclosed tags. (You
could just use <p> instead of having to put </p> to close a paragraph)
But modern Internet Browsers, like IE, Google Chrome and Foxfire have difficulty
reading the old HTML. Also, your site is ignored by PDAs, Smart Phones, iTouch,
iPads, iPhones and any other technology the gets data from the Web.
In addition, HTML does NOT work with XML (extended mark up language). This is
very important because modern browsers and mobile browsers are more attuned to
XML is a tag-based language, with many similarities to HTML. However, unlike
HTML, which has a limited number of tags that don't always identify the
differences in the presented information, XML allows you the freedom to design
your own tags.
In HTML, you must use the same tags to identify many different TYPES of
information, such as using <h1> for a page headline and also using it for the
name of a product, in your catalog. Web browsers treat the <h1> tags the same.
They do not know that one is a text page headline and the other is a product.
This creates some very messy organizational problems inside your document.
XML is used to identify different pieces of information and structures the data into documents. Also, many sitemaps run off the <h1> tags and, if you have
multiple <h1> tags, in your document, the sitemap will index them all.
In XML, you can create and define your own types of tags, such as <product> <title> <event> <genus>, etc.
XML makes the meaning of each block of information clearer. XML offers the use
of tags that specifically describe the information between the tags.
XML allows browsers, search engine bots and mobile devices to diffentiate
between types of informtion, on your site.
XHTML works with XML, HTML doesn't.
Do you want your site searched and available to everyone? Then you need to
convert from HTML to XHTML.