PSG Number: GM-14-005
Topical Area: Web Design and Development
Issue Date: 11/1/2013
Effective Date: 11/1/2013
Document Type: Guideline; Published (approved by Web Standards Group and GTA)
POC for Changes: Interactive
Synopsis: Code and Markup guidelines for State of Georgia web sites.

2.1.1 Develop with Web Standards

It is important to develop with standards compliant code to ensure that it is compatible with the most web browsers and devices over a longer period of time.

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) provides technical documentation on standards, as well as free tools to assist you in developing standards compliant websites.

2.1.2 HTML / CSS

New websites should be built with HTML5 / CSS3 standards that are supported in modern web browsers, while using graceful degradation techniques to ensure that the sites still display sufficiently on older web browsers.

* Use analytics data to determine the older web browsers your site needs to support. If a web browser version is used by more than 3% of visitors, be sure all major content is still accessible using graceful degradation.

For more details on HTML and CSS, see the W3C Standards for HTML and CSS.

2.1.3 Javascript

Javascript may be used to enhance website content and design. DO NOT display main content with Javascript, as it may prevent search engines from ranking the content.

For more details on scripting, see the W3C Standards for Scripting and Ajax.

2.1.4 Frames

Do not use frames to display content.

Frames pose problems with usability, accessibility of the site to the visually impaired, and make it difficult for search engines to index the website. If an iframe is required for functionality, it should be titled with text that facilitates frame identification and navigation.

2.1.5 Definitions

graceful degradation - coding the site in a way that utilizes modern coding standards while allowing for old browsers to still render the page effectively. For example, you can provide CSS for multiple background images for browsers that support it, while also providing a single background image for older browsers that do not.

2.1.6 Resources