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What are your users using? IE vs FF and everyone else

 
 
Diogenes
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      01-09-2008
Kind readers,

The first cut of this was originally posted in
comp.infosystems.www.authoring.stylesheets

I was dismissed as being off topic.

The reason for posting in 'stylesheets' was I felt
this group would be the most sensitive to the differences
between the browsers and what their respective audiences
were using.

So I repost again, this time with more specific information.
I may or may not have a point here, depending on how you read
this, and your general temperament.

================================================== ==============

IE is losing market share because it is an inferior product. A number
of news articles (from google news) regarding the demise of the Netscape
browser cited FireFox as having 16% of market share.

I think that number is low. I provided a link to a site that more than
doubles that figure.

http://www.w3schools.com/browsers/browsers_stats.asp

I'm not saying these numbers are the final authority. It's
just one sample.

I manage 2 sites, one personal, the other commercial. Both are low
traffic. Here are their numbers for Dec, produced by AWSTATS:

Personal Comm
FireFox (all versions) 57% 68.5%
IE 39.2 24.4
Others 2.9 6.9

Granted, this is a very small sample, a selective audience, yada,
yada, yada, but I trust these numbers.

I was wondering what other are experiencing on their 100K
visitors/month website.

I imagine that the FF usage in Europe is MUCH higher that 16%.

FWIW, another twist to all of this is that Microsoft is using the
demise of Netscape an an argument in court that an extension of its
'anti-trust oversight' should NOT be extended. The original reasons
for this oversight have disappeared (NS is gone).

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/01...ntion_seekers/

My recent experience in buying computers in the retail market in
Calgary, Canada, is that Microsoft Vista is the ONLY windows OS
on offer and IE is the only browser installed on these whiz bang
machines that do everything with almost everything pre-installed
(including stuff you don't want).

You have to pull strings to get XP, for instance, and download FF
yourself. Right? Please tell me I'm wrong.

It's not the Adam Smith 'invisible hand' that is guiding the market
here, it's the invisible hand of Bill Gates.

One last link, by John Dovorak, says it better than I ever can.

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2704,2246368,00.asp


Cheers
-Dio

 
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Travis Newbury
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      01-09-2008
On Jan 9, 3:00 am, Diogenes <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> I was dismissed as being off topic.


My question again is why does it matter to the site what browser
someone visits with? Isn't the mantra "be browser independent?"

 
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_q_u_a_m_i_s's
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      01-09-2008
On Jan 9, 12:54 pm, Travis Newbury <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> On Jan 9, 3:00 am, Diogenes <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
> > I was dismissed as being off topic.

>
> My question again is why does it matter to the site what browser
> someone visits with? Isn't the mantra "be browser independent?"


Yeah, it is, but when doing lots of js and css... you just wanna
redirect IE users to get a real browser and let on FF users see your
page. You need to do too muck code-hacking to that all browsers would
be happy.

Ever tried the same page in IE, FF, Opera and Safari? I mean a "web
2.0" page..with lots of js & css in it.

Not trying to say that IE is the "bad one" in this area(even if i
really think so) but when IE was 99% of all browsers visiting a web-
site you just needed to program that page for IE, with all its hacks,
and workarounds.... now you need to make the same thing for at least 2
browsers. So right now (or until IE dissapears, or becomes a real
browser) you need to make the same page for 2 different browsers, and
when a change is required you have to make the same change twice...
this means a lot of code to handle, and a lot of opportunities for
bugs appearing (you can never know all the quirks of a browser,
especially in the case of IE where IE5 behaves different than IE6, and
IE6 different than IE7).
 
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Anthony Levensalor
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      01-09-2008
_q_u_a_m_i_s's said:

> Yeah, it is, but when doing lots of js and css... you just wanna
> redirect IE users to get a real browser and let on FF users see your
> page. You need to do too muck code-hacking to that all browsers would
> be happy.
>


There really isn't all that much 'code-hacking' required. Conscientious
coding is much better than hacking and as far as Javascript goes, it is
not difficult at all to find the common threads and use them
appropriately so that code works in Safari, Opera, IE, and FireFox.

> Ever tried the same page in IE, FF, Opera and Safari? I mean a "web
> 2.0" page..with lots of js & css in it.
>


Yes, and I've written quite a few as well. With only minor CSS hacks
most things work out just fine, and using object detection in Javascript
means never having to say you're sorry.


> Not trying to say that IE is the "bad one" in this area(even if i
> really think so) but when IE was 99% of all browsers visiting a web-
> site you just needed to program that page for IE, with all its hacks,
> and workarounds.... now you need to make the same thing for at least 2
> browsers. So right now (or until IE dissapears, or becomes a real
> browser) you need to make the same page for 2 different browsers, and
> when a change is required you have to make the same change twice...
> this means a lot of code to handle, and a lot of opportunities for
> bugs appearing (you can never know all the quirks of a browser,
> especially in the case of IE where IE5 behaves different than IE6, and
> IE6 different than IE7).


No, no, IE is the bad one.

All the best,
~A!


--
anthony at my pet programmer dot com
 
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Travis Newbury
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      01-09-2008
On Jan 9, 6:48 am, "_q_u_a_m_i_s's" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> > My question again is why does it matter to the site what browser
> > someone visits with? Isn't the mantra "be browser independent?"

> Yeah, it is, but when doing lots of js and css... you just wanna
> redirect IE users to get a real browser and let on FF users see your
> page.


If you redirect me and tell me to get a "real browser" I will likely
leave your site and never return.

Your visitor will think: "Since ever site I normally go to works just
fine with my browser, I can only assume that it is YOUR site that is
broken and NOT my browser. Bye bye now..."

Just a thought.

 
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Anthony Levensalor
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      01-09-2008
Travis Newbury said:
> On Jan 9, 6:48 am, "_q_u_a_m_i_s's" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>> Yeah, it is, but when doing lots of js and css... you just wanna
>> redirect IE users to get a real browser and let on FF users see your
>> page.

[snip]
> Your visitor will think: "Since ever site I normally go to works just
> fine with my browser, I can only assume that it is YOUR site that is
> broken and NOT my browser. Bye bye now..."
>
> Just a thought.
>


And I personally think the user who would say that would be 100%
correct. It is really not that difficult to make sites that are
cross-compatible these days.

~A!

--
anthony at my pet programmer dot com
 
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Sherman Pendley
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      01-09-2008
Travis Newbury <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:

> On Jan 9, 3:00 am, Diogenes <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>> I was dismissed as being off topic.

>
> My question again is why does it matter to the site what browser
> someone visits with? Isn't the mantra "be browser independent?"


In theory yes, but in practice we're often forced to use strange hacks
to work around a certain browser's broken behavior.

The need for "body { font-size:100%; }" for instance, which IIRC is a
workaround for a bug in IE. Here's a hack that's perfectly standards-
compliant, but used only for the benefit of that one browser.

Whether a browser has 70%+ or 5% market share is an important factor in
one's planning. The fact that IE has such a large market share means
that web developers should be aware of it and test their sites against
it - preferably with all of the recent versions of it. And when new
versions of popular browsers are released, we need to stay informed
about whatever new bugs they add to the mix...

Ideally, all this following and testing against this browser or that
wouldn't be necessary, but browser bugs are an annoying reality. We
can't just cover our ears and chant "standards" until the bugs go
away, if we want to attract and keep and audience.

Fortunately, virtualization like Parallels, VMWare, and VirtualPC has
made it easy to test against a variety of IE/Windows versions without
having to build a whole computer lab.

If IE had a hypothetical market share of 5%, then I wouldn't consider
it worth the time to worry about its bugs. In fact, on my CamelBones
site I *don't* bother with testing against IE. CB is a tool for Mac
developers, and all IE/Windows readers are going to quickly realize
that these aren't the droids they're looking for. My logs show IE/Win
numbers that are practically nil.

sherm--

--
My blog: http://shermspace.blogspot.com
Cocoa programming in Perl: http://camelbones.sourceforge.net
 
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Sherman Pendley
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      01-09-2008
Anthony Levensalor <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:

> There really isn't all that much 'code-hacking'
> required. Conscientious coding is much better than hacking and as far
> as Javascript goes, it is not difficult at all to find the common
> threads and use them appropriately so that code works in Safari,
> Opera, IE, and FireFox.


And even then, you won't need to constantly write that kind of code.

There are plenty of free libraries that encapsulate all that browser-
checking and other standard code into a simple function call. And if
you don't like those, it's not hard to write your own.

sherm--

--
My blog: http://shermspace.blogspot.com
Cocoa programming in Perl: http://camelbones.sourceforge.net
 
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Anthony Levensalor
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      01-09-2008
Sherman Pendley said:
> Anthony Levensalor <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:
>
>> There really isn't all that much 'code-hacking'
>> required. Conscientious coding is much better than hacking and as far
>> as Javascript goes, it is not difficult at all to find the common
>> threads and use them appropriately so that code works in Safari,
>> Opera, IE, and FireFox.

>
> And even then, you won't need to constantly write that kind of code.
>
> There are plenty of free libraries that encapsulate all that browser-
> checking and other standard code into a simple function call. And if
> you don't like those, it's not hard to write your own.
>
> sherm--
>


Yeah, but browser checking sucks, and it's not a good move. There will
be more browsers than the ones we have now, and the ones we have now
will eventually go away. Why try to keep up?

Not only that, but there are a great deal more browsers than there are
scripts that include them all. Object/Function/Array/Collection
detection on an as-needed basis works the best, and you don't have to
have 80kb of Javascript code, 79kb of which you'lll never use, to do it.
It's a beautiful thing.

~A!

--
anthony at my pet programmer dot com
 
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Gregor Kofler
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      01-09-2008
Sherman Pendley meinte:

> There are plenty of free libraries that encapsulate all that browser-
> checking and other standard code into a simple function call. And if
> you don't like those, it's not hard to write your own.


Libraries that do *browser*-checking are - at best - useless. Most of
the time they'll be the source of errors.

Gregor


--
http://photo.gregorkofler.at ::: Landschafts- und Reisefotografie
http://web.gregorkofler.com ::: meine JS-Spielwiese
http://www.image2d.com ::: Bildagentur für den alpinen Raum
 
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