W3C Validator API

The W3C announced the release of an API for the HTML validator or rather, that’s what they call it. In fact, it’s nothing more than an output filter on their normal validator output, which gives SOAP 1.2 conforming output. It requires a HTTP request though, which makes it a rather funny “API” to deal with.

I created a simple implementation on top of it, using PHP’s DOMDocument extension to walk through the result, as using NUSoap or something like that felt like overkill, and it would be hard since the request isn’t a SOAP request. It’s quite simple, but it’s also slow…

So, my wishlist for the next version of this API:

  • a way to do a SOAP request instead of a HTTP request;
  • faster, please, please W3C, make it faster;
  • a way to specify what info i want, it would be cool to be able to just know if a site is valid or not.

If they fix that, I’m a happy camper :)

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21 Responses

  1. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 3 November, 2006

    Perhaps I should read up on my SOAP, but tbh i think you’re wrong :). Downloading the validator is NOT what I’d want, since I couldn’t be bothered to completely install the thing… I think i’m giving all information that is coming back back…

  2. Scott at RealepicureanBy Scott at Realepicurean on 4 November, 2006

    Some people still aren’t really fully into this validation thing, but for me, it’s as much about education as anything else.

    I think browsers are intelligent enough to work around a few little hiccups, but still, we should all try and aim for the future.

  3. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 4 November, 2006

    Scott: you’re a guy to my heart :) I hope one day all webmasters will grasp this…

  4. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 5 November, 2006

    I updated the validator API script to now show warnings and warningcount as well, it now uses all the data you can get from the API.

  5. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 6 November, 2006

    The functions.php just does my layout, wouldn’t be much use to you :)

  6. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 6 November, 2006

    Thx for the tip on Curl, had to install it but it seems more stable indeed.

  7. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 6 November, 2006

    fixed another small bug where it would say your document was invalid when it hadn’t received a proper response, it’s now all done it seems :)

  8. ThinkbasicBy Thinkbasic on 16 November, 2006

    hmmm I keep getting this message:

    Didn’t receive an answer from W3 validator, please reload.

  9. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 16 November, 2006

    Thinkbasic: you’re right, it’s disabled at the moment… I’ve emailed the responsible person at the W3C about it.

  10. ThinkbasicBy Thinkbasic on 17 November, 2006

    Ok let me know when it works!
    I want to use this on my website!

  11. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 17 November, 2006

    I’ll let you know, probably through this blog :)

  12. olivierBy olivier on 17 November, 2006

    Joost, Thinkbasic,

    The API on validator.w3.org is enabled again. My apologies for the hiccup, and many thanks to Joost for telling me about it.

  13. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 17 November, 2006

    Olivier: thx for letting us know! Thinkbasic: i’ve enabled my implementation again :)

  14. ThinkbasicBy Thinkbasic on 17 November, 2006

    thnx guys!

  15. SudarBy Sudar on 16 December, 2006

    Hi Joost,

    The above code fails when we pass a url which is having invalid or wrong Charset.
    You can use this page to check this http://googlemyway.com/searchgoogle.php

    Cheers,
    Sudar

  16. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 16 December, 2006

    Ey Sudar,

    you’re right, I’ve thrown a more decent error now, but it does throw an error on the W3 side, so I’ll be mailing Olivier about that :)

    Regards,
    Joost

  17. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 16 December, 2006

    Sudar: the webinterface errors as well, yet more elegant than the API does, I’ve email Olivier about it.

  18. SudarBy Sudar on 16 December, 2006

    Thank for updating it.

    Let’s hope that people at W3C come up with an elegant approach for API as well. :-)

    Cheers,
    Sudar

  19. Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 16 December, 2006

    NP, this is exactly what I intended by implementing it :)

  20. yoshiBy yoshi on 21 April, 2008

    i tried it but im having some errors
    on this line

    apc_fetch($url)
  21. ReneBy Rene on 10 May, 2008

    Excellent code, does anyone know how I can get this to work on php4. I know the DOMDocument needs to be changed, but I’m not sure what to.
    Thanks.