Microsoft Finally Gets Web Standards

MS Frontpage was long known (and often derided) for its tendency to walk all over web standards. It looks like this is about to change. [Best Tech Videos On The Net](http://www.bestechvideos.com/) (which incidentally is a great place for finding new Tech Videos) has just published a set of videos and demos from [Microsoft MIX07](http://visitmix.com/). One of these that I’ve just watched concerns how the new version of [Microsoft Visual Studio (ORCAS)](http://www.bestechvideos.com/2007/05/25/microsoft-mix07-using-visual-studio-codename-orcas-to-design-and-develop-rich-ajax-enabled-web-sites/) can be used to create great-looking AJAX web sites (tied to .NET of course!). I found the video particularly compelling because of the way MS now embrace standards-driven design and proper separation of *Style* from *Content*. For example, the HTML shown in the demo was properly marked-up XHTML 1.0 Transitional and the styles where kept out of the markup. But even better, there’s a visual designer for CSS that shows the padding, margins and styles all linked to views of the tags, style properties, and live display. This stuff apparently is in [Microsoft Expression](http://www.microsoft.com/expression/) and if so, it will make that product a really compelling replacement for Frontpage. It’ll be even more so if Microsoft has recognized that not all web sites are based on ASP.NET! But I guess I’ll have to evaluate the product to see if that is true!

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Author: cpjobling

Senior lecturer, College of Engineering, Swansea University