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Browsers, browsers! Quo vadis?

 
 
El Kabong
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      05-11-2007
There is a lovely site offering arguments regarding use of scripts to detect
which browser a visitor is using: http://www.quirksmode.org/js/support.html.

While reading the author's essay, it occurred to me that there was actually
a broader subject involved: Why should, or shouldn't, we design for the
lowest browser capability? Now please keep in mind that I do _not_ have a
solidly opinion formed regarding this yet but I would like to have one, a
valid one, if possible.

One point I've considered leads me away from the idea of designing for the
older or more obscure browser versions, since newer popular browsers are
free for the downloading. Therefore, the question becomes, "is the added
time and effort (translate to "expense") to develop universally compatible
pages justified?"

This may seem a moot discussion and perhaps I'm merely looking for
justification for a lazy man's way out, but I'm very interested in your
opinions about this.

Thanks,

El

"Faced with the choice between changing one's mind and proving that there is
no need to do so, almost everyone gets busy on the proof."
Galbraith's Law


 
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Neredbojias
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      05-11-2007
On Fri, 11 May 2007 14:57:23 GMT El Kabong scribed:

> There is a lovely site offering arguments regarding use of scripts to
> detect which browser a visitor is using:
> http://www.quirksmode.org/js/support.html.
>
> While reading the author's essay, it occurred to me that there was
> actually a broader subject involved: Why should, or shouldn't, we
> design for the lowest browser capability? Now please keep in mind that
> I do _not_ have a solidly opinion formed regarding this yet but I
> would like to have one, a valid one, if possible.
>
> One point I've considered leads me away from the idea of designing for
> the older or more obscure browser versions, since newer popular
> browsers are free for the downloading. Therefore, the question
> becomes, "is the added time and effort (translate to "expense") to
> develop universally compatible pages justified?"
>
> This may seem a moot discussion and perhaps I'm merely looking for
> justification for a lazy man's way out, but I'm very interested in
> your opinions about this.


This has been discussed ad infinitum so perhaps you could edify yourself
more satisfactorily by Googling for past usenet fare on the subject.

--
Neredbojias
He who laughs last sounds like an idiot.
 
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J.O. Aho
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      05-11-2007
El Kabong wrote:

> One point I've considered leads me away from the idea of designing for the
> older or more obscure browser versions, since newer popular browsers are
> free for the downloading. Therefore, the question becomes, "is the added
> time and effort (translate to "expense") to develop universally compatible
> pages justified?"


Much depends on what you want to show to the rest of the internet, if you want
to make a "how to fix your microsoft installation after hard drive crash",
then the visitors would most likely be only MSIE users and you don't have to
care much about other browsers.

If you instead make a page, "how to take best care of your horse", you can't
anymore be sure on that your visitors will be using MSIE, it could even be the
minority browser. On a site like this you should be more aware of how it looks
in different browsers and should at least see to that it's useful in the major
browser families, khtml, gecko, opera and msie.

Most browsers handles HTML4 quite well, so if you get your code validated at
the w3c validator, you can assume it's usable by the major borwsers, it may
not look the same in all of them.

Things to avoid, if you want to make the site usable for as many people as
possible, is flash and jscript (microsofts version of javascript), as those
have a limited support when looking at CPU architecture and operating systems.
CSS, specially CSS2 is poorly supported in older browsers, so it could be good
to be sparse in the use of styles (but the number of people using older
browsers are limited, I wouldn't care too much about them).

I do have a number of different architectures on my own computers, and I use
GNU/Linux both at home and at work, when I do for the web is usually made in
mind to work as well on all my computers and working with wap is even more
difficult as the browsers in the phones has even larger variety on feature
support.


> This may seem a moot discussion and perhaps I'm merely looking for
> justification for a lazy man's way out, but I'm very interested in your
> opinions about this.


Of course it's all up to you what you want to support, but bad support can
lead to that your page to get less visited.


--

//Aho
 
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El Kabong
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      05-11-2007
"J.O. Aho" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> El Kabong wrote:
>
>> This may seem a moot discussion and perhaps I'm merely looking for
>> justification for a lazy man's way out, but I'm very interested in your
>> opinions about this.

>
> Of course it's all up to you what you want to support, but bad support can
> lead to that your page to get less visited.
>



Thanks J.O.

Well, maybe I thought someone would just give me a verbal slap on the head
and tell me "Yes, it must fly in all environments." or "Don't worry about
it... nobody else does."

The page with which I am currently concerned is
http://www.tomahawkfallride.com/Cust...erShow2007.htm. It is supposed to
match exactly a flyer being physically distributed. It works OK in IE7 but
it falls down badly in FireFox. The pages validated nicely for HTML and CSS
so I'm a little confused by the failure in Mozilla. If I fix it for FireFox,
it's going to look like crap in IE7.

Is this something I should ignore or is there a solution?

Thanks again for your patience.

El


 
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dorayme
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      05-11-2007
In article <Ez51i.4659$cu1.2697@trnddc01>,
"El Kabong" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> The page with which I am currently concerned is
> http://www.tomahawkfallride.com/Cust...erShow2007.htm. It is supposed to
> match exactly a flyer being physically distributed. It works OK in IE7 but
> it falls down badly in FireFox.


And in Safari ... and doubtless other reasonably standard
compliant browsers. It is a typical example of using the wrong
type of tool to try to mimic a printed page, namely absolute
positioning instead of a PDF. The material is simple enough to
quite do without all the need for any positioning at all. It is
headings and paras and a couple of pics. Why would you not simply
go down the page with these and style the elements lightly to
suit the conveying of the information and text and background
colours and leave it at that?

--
dorayme
 
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El Kabong
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      05-12-2007
Thanks.

I'm not sure the site owner really needs it to match the flyer precisely. I
did upload it as a pdf,
(http://www.tomahawkfallride.com/Cust...erShow2007.pdf) but it's nearly
a megabyte and we're pretty sure a lot of our target audience is not on
broadband.

So I'll give it a try tomorrow without the positioning.

El

"dorayme" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> In article <Ez51i.4659$cu1.2697@trnddc01>,
> "El Kabong" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>> The page with which I am currently concerned is
>> http://www.tomahawkfallride.com/Cust...erShow2007.htm. It is supposed
>> to
>> match exactly a flyer being physically distributed. It works OK in IE7
>> but
>> it falls down badly in FireFox.

>
> And in Safari ... and doubtless other reasonably standard
> compliant browsers. It is a typical example of using the wrong
> type of tool to try to mimic a printed page, namely absolute
> positioning instead of a PDF. The material is simple enough to
> quite do without all the need for any positioning at all. It is
> headings and paras and a couple of pics. Why would you not simply
> go down the page with these and style the elements lightly to
> suit the conveying of the information and text and background
> colours and leave it at that?
>
> --
> dorayme



 
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BootNic
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Posts: n/a
 
      05-12-2007
> El Kabong <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> news: K4a1i.77$145.71@trnddc02
> I'm not sure the site owner really needs it to match the flyer
> precisely. I did upload it as a pdf,
> (http://www.tomahawkfallride.com/Cust...erShow2007.pdf) but
> it's nearly a megabyte and we're pretty sure a lot of our target
> audience is not on broadband.


That pdf could be under 200kb, would that make life better?

--
BootNic Friday, May 11, 2007 11:42 PM

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty
recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity:
but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on
their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.
*Thomas Edward Lawrence (of Arabia)*



 
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J.O. Aho
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      05-12-2007
El Kabong wrote:
> "J.O. Aho" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>> El Kabong wrote:
>>
>>> This may seem a moot discussion and perhaps I'm merely looking for
>>> justification for a lazy man's way out, but I'm very interested in your
>>> opinions about this.

>> Of course it's all up to you what you want to support, but bad support can
>> lead to that your page to get less visited.
>>

>
>
> Thanks J.O.
>
> Well, maybe I thought someone would just give me a verbal slap on the head
> and tell me "Yes, it must fly in all environments." or "Don't worry about
> it... nobody else does."
>
> The page with which I am currently concerned is
> http://www.tomahawkfallride.com/Cust...erShow2007.htm. It is supposed to
> match exactly a flyer being physically distributed. It works OK in IE7 but
> it falls down badly in FireFox. The pages validated nicely for HTML and CSS
> so I'm a little confused by the failure in Mozilla. If I fix it for FireFox,
> it's going to look like crap in IE7.


Skip absolute positions, it never works well if you want to support more than
one browser. If you want to get some ideas how to do things, take a look at
http://css.maxdesign.com.au/index.htm

Your page gets quite unusable if you has enlarged the fonts (120%), regardless
of browser.

--

//Aho
 
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dorayme
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      05-12-2007
In article <K4a1i.77$145.71@trnddc02>,
"El Kabong" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> Thanks.
>
> I'm not sure the site owner really needs it to match the flyer precisely. I
> did upload it as a pdf,
> (http://www.tomahawkfallride.com/Cust...erShow2007.pdf) but it's nearly
> a megabyte and we're pretty sure a lot of our target audience is not on
> broadband.
>
> So I'll give it a try tomorrow without the positioning.
>
> El
>
> "dorayme" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> > In article <Ez51i.4659$cu1.2697@trnddc01>,
> > "El Kabong" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> >
> >> The page with which I am currently concerned is
> >> http://www.tomahawkfallride.com/Cust...erShow2007.htm. It is supposed
> >> to
> >> match exactly a flyer being physically distributed. It works OK in IE7
> >> but
> >> it falls down badly in FireFox.

> >
> > And in Safari ... and doubtless other reasonably standard
> > compliant browsers. It is a typical example of using the wrong
> > type of tool to try to mimic a printed page, namely absolute
> > positioning instead of a PDF. The material is simple enough to
> > quite do without all the need for any positioning at all. It is
> > headings and paras and a couple of pics. Why would you not simply
> > go down the page with these and style the elements lightly to
> > suit the conveying of the information and text and background
> > colours and leave it at that?


Best not to top post. You could perhaps start with something as
simple as:

body {
background-color : white;
font-family: "Times New Roman", Helvetica, serif;
color: black;
margin: 0;
padding: 0;
}
#main {
padding: 10px;
margin-top: 5px;
margin-left: 5px;
margin-bottom: 5px;
max-width: 35em;
margin: auto
}

#ray {float: right;}


#heading {margin: 5px auto auto auto;}


h1 {

width: 100%;
height: 50px;
background: #000;

margin: auto;
text-align: center;
}


and then for HTML (just get rid of the white line in th heading
in an image editor)


<div id="main">

<h1><img id="heading"src="Ray_Kittel/header.gif" alt="Chopper
Challenge Custom Bike Show Presented by Bubba's Midwest Biker
Productions" height="45" width="530"></h1>


<p><img id="ray" src="Ray_Kittel/RayKittel.jpg" alt="Ray Kittel"
height="238" width="214">In conjunction with the 26th Anniversary
of the Tomahawk Fall Ride, Bubba¹s Midwest Biker Productions is
pleased to announce the return of the most respected and trusted
name in bike show judging in the upper Midwest for the "Chopper
Challenge² Custom Bike Show. Ray Kittel of Ray¹s M/C Show World
will, once again, serve as chief show judge &amp; bike show event
coordinator for this special Tomahawk Fall Ride bike show
competition and special feature at Bubba¹s Big Party! $500.00 in
cash prizes, plus trophies, and bragging rights, will be at
stake. First through eighth place winners will each receive a
trophy plus the following, applicable, cash award:</p>


<p><img src="Ray_Kittel/prizes.gif" alt="1st prize: $150, 2nd
prize: $115, 3rd prize: $85, 4th prize: $60, 5th prize: $40, 6th
prize: $25, 7th prize: $15, 8th prize: $10." border="0"
height="51" width="513">


<p>PLUS: FOUR additional entries will be selected (solely by the
judges) to receive trophies as ¹Judges¹ Choice Honorable Mention²
winners!</p>

<p><img src="Ray_Kittel/entry_fee.gif" alt="" height="22"
width="530"></p>

<p>Chopper shops * enter three motorcycles in competition and
receive the fourth entry * FREE (limit of four entries per
exhibitor or shop). Register on-site, day of the show, Saturday,
September 15. (Sorry, no pre-registration is available for this
bike show competition.) The show is located at the beautiful
Nokomis Community Park in the township of Nokomis on Business
Highway 51N (County Highway ³L²) Tomahawk, Wisconsin. Winners
will be determined by combining judges¹ scoring with ³spectators¹
choice² voting results utilizing a point system. Bike show
competition will be open to all years, makes, and models of
motorcycles. There is no ³individual class² competition. All
entries from stock to full custom * vintage antiques, period
classics, touring bikes, special interest entries, sport street
bikes, trikes, performance machines, mild street customs to
radical choppers * will battle it out in head-to-head competition
(shootout style) vying for judges¹ points and spectator votes.</p>

<p>Entry and/or company display signs are encouraged and
welcomed.</p>

<p id="showdates"><img src="Ray_Kittel/show_dates.gif" alt=""
border="0" height="97" width="530">


and go on from here. You can simplify further, improve this too,
but above is roughly if you insist on the pics to match the flyer.

--
dorayme
 
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JD
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      05-12-2007
BootNic wrote:
>> El Kabong <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>> news: K4a1i.77$145.71@trnddc02
>> I'm not sure the site owner really needs it to match the flyer
>> precisely. I did upload it as a pdf,
>> (http://www.tomahawkfallride.com/Cust...erShow2007.pdf) but it's
>> nearly a megabyte and we're pretty sure a lot of our target audience
>> is not on broadband.

>
> That pdf could be under 200kb, would that make life better?


Not for people who think PDF viewers are utterly tedious, such as me.

The OP would be better off creating a nice, semantic HTML page for the
content, and maybe offering the PDF leaflet as an optional download for
printing purposes.
 
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