Nice post dude.
Of course, "HTML 4.01 Transitional" is a flavour of HTML 4.01, and not a specification in its own right. I use the HTML5 doctype exclusively now, as it is easier to remember, and allows you to use everything that the previous HTML doctypes do, with no negatives. All the doctype ever did was put the browser into standards mode…but of course, try explaining that to clients!
Do you tend to discuss stuff like doctypes with clients? I thought it would be a case of hiding details like that from them, and just making sure that what you choose allows you to implement what they want? OR does it depend a lot on the client?
You are correct, the HTML 4.01 is the spec, not the transitional flavor. I was trying to be thorough about my approach.
Sometimes we discuss doctypes with clients, sometimes not. It depends on the client's technical knowledge/interest. Our agreements state the standard we will use so it's never hidden and not just glossed over in a conversation. Most of our clients don't know and/or don't care. They come to us to address a business need, not a technical one.
For those who do, we explain the specifications we use (including level of WCAG support). When they show an interest I am thrilled because it gives me an opportunity to demonstrate that they made the right choice by hiring us. When they don't, at least I know we're doing good work.
Thanks for the explanation dude – I am always interested in seeing how normal companies deal with this stuff out in the wild.
And sorry for being so anal at you ;-)
You're not being anal, you are being precise. Considering how much I expect that from others it's fair to make me clarify.
As for us being "out in the wild," that only scratches the surface…