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Anchor Tag and Element ID Standards

Yesterday, I complained about some markup issues I was having while developing Scrawlers.com.

It appears that I was breaking HTML standards. The combined list of anchor names and element ID’s should be unique according to W3C. I find this a little confusing, but I can adjust.

It appears to me that element ID’s are meant to be a sort of alias that can be used like an anchor name (along with many other functions). I don’t get the sense that anchor names are meant to be aliases for element ID’s, however. I base that opinion on this statement in the spec, meant to describe why an anchor ID may be a better choice than an anchor name in some situations:

The id attribute can act as more than just an anchor name.

They did not say “the anchor name can act as more than just an anchor name.” :)

An interesting effect, brought to my attention via an email from a reader, is that one can use element ID’s in lieu of anchor names to link within documents. This means that I’ll be going through Scrawlers and eliminating a bunch of anchor tags, minimizing markup and accelerating page loads.

I still think IE6 could have degraded more elegantly. You know, like all the other browsers.