About Dillo’s Bug Meter


Dillo’s bug meter shows the number of detected bugs inside a webpage. The bugs are caught at parsing time, and therefore the error messagesalso show the line where they occur and provide ahint of what was expected instead!

The primary goal of the bug meter is to help webmasters and page authorsto polish the contents of their sites with a view to make them standardscompliant.

How does it work?

Mainly, the parser catches”nesting“bugs. That is, improperly closed orunclosed elements. This is, actually, one of the mostcommonmistakes found in web pages, so the chances of a dillo-validatedweb page to beW3C orWDGcompliant are very high!

The rest of the reported bugs set is basically related to proper formatand allowed contents for elements and attributes.

What’s the difference with the W3C and WDG validators?

Mainly the ease of use and completeness.

Dillo’s bug meter is not a substitute for formal validators but atool to help towards standards compliance.

Every page displayed by Dillo shows the bug meter count, and also keepsan error message list. That is, for the sole act of displaying apage you know whether it validates with Dillo or not.The error message list (with hints) is a single click away!

Once the page validates you can double check it either with the W3Cor WDG by right-clicking the bug meter and making your choice. Thesevalidators make a formal check of the page contents.

Most of the time the page will pass this second check!

Why are standards so important?

When a page is not standards compliant it becomes slang, and assuch its interpretation is subjective or, at best, only known toits creators.

Such pages, and particularly those with multiple slang instances,start to become only understandable by one interpreter (browser).

Once this happens, the universality of the Web fails, because it restricts site usage to a certain browser.

Making your sites standards-compliant will help ensure everybrowser, old and new, will be able to present the sitesproperly, and also that they willwork in the future, making your siteaccessible from a wide range of devices ranging from desktops tocell phones.

The universality and interoperability of the Web is one of the biggestassets of mankind today. Liberty of expression and freedom of informationhave found their new home inside the fertile Web space.

If you let a single corporation or entity the power tocontrol the Internet’s protocols, they would beable to control the Web just as much as the mass-media.

Please don’t let that happen.

What can I do?

  • Be aware of the importance of Web standards, and help to spread the word.
  • Help page authors and webmasters to provide standards-compliant contents(For instance, you can copy&paste the error messages produced byDillo, and mail them to the author).
  • Reject slang and proprietary protocols, use alternative standard-compliant sites.


  • The Web Standards Project’s FAQ.
  • Tidy:an extraordinary tool that automatically corrects a lotof errors found in web pages.
  • W3C andWDG.

Note: near the release of dillo-3.0.4 a person that teaches HTMLwrote me with some suggested links of their own. I lost the email inthe server migration and wish he could send it again.