Work is well underway towards modernising the user interface of MantisBT. The first step being taken towards this goal is to ensure that MantisBT 1.3.x produces XHTML strict page output. Bug #12545 tracks progress towards removing deprecated HTML 4 (and earlier) features from MantisBT page output and replacing them with modern equivalents. For instance, the old <font>, <b>, <u>, <i>, etc elements of HTML 4 are very much deprecated. This bug report also tracks progress towards ensuring that MantisBT page outputs produce well formed XHTML (so that pages can be parsed using XML tools).
Note that the 1.3.x branch now uses the application/xhtml+xml MIME type where the browser supports rendering XML documents. The XML specifications state that if malformed XML is detected during the parsing of an XML document, a critical error should be produced and the parsing immediately terminated. This will make it much easier for errors in the output XHTML markup to be detected and fixed (both in the core and within plugins).
User interface breakages are expected in the 1.3.x branch while the user interface is being modernised. We’re trying to create semantic output from MantisBT complete with class and ID attributes to allow for precise CSS styling of page outputs. Ultimately this will allow us to remove the dedicated “print” pages from MantisBT and instead just use separate on-screen and print stylesheets. This is easier for users, easier for MantisBT developers, easier for plugin authors and less prone to errors and discrepancies.
If you would like to assist with modernising the MantisBT interface we’d very much like to hear from you. Experience with XHTML and CSS are required – as well as a good understanding of how to write semantic and meaningful markup. There is a lot of work to complete and it generally has to be performed by hand on a page-by-page basis.