Thank you Tracknut for your comments, a very good point taken about explaining doctype, I will expand the tutorial in that direction, I left it out early because the tut was about enticing complete noobs to start, and doctype declarations can look a bit "Codish" and for brevity sidestepped the whole html4.1 explanation. But it probably is best to go there before I go into CSS at any depth.
I know what you mean about teaching redundant technology, although I dont agree with XHTML being a dying breed because it is still the top standard, and W3C's HTML5 validator is still considered experimental, and its completion looks a long way off, so for beginners I felt it was best to cut their teeth on XHTML. But your opinion is respected.
You are probably right about telling them what version standards I am working with, it probably means giving a W3C validation service tut.
#dicotomy, thank you for your comments, may I ask what was your overall opinion of my site (presentation, content, usability)