Jason Kottke wrote a post tonight about the general confusion surrounding web standards, semantically rich markup, and the relationship between the two.
Jason makes some valid points in his post. In particular, I agree that the idea of “standards-compliance” often borders on religious zealotry. Sought for no other reason than to attain a simple badge which supposedly “validates” the effort taken to get there. It’s as if some designers/developers strive to follow all the rules just to see those magic words when they get to the pearly gates: “Well done thou good and faithful coder. This page is valid ____!” continued