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Re: Better browsing

From: Peter Evans <evans@i.hosei.ac.jp>
Date: Thu, 01 Mar 2001 20:35:52 +0900
To: html-tidy@w3.org
Message-Id: <20010301201026.E5D4.EVANS@i.hosei.ac.jp>
James Pickering reminds us:

> The Web Standards Project (WASP) .....
> ..... is conducting a campaign to encourage Internet users
> to upgrade their Browsers to new versions which (for the most
> part) comply with W3C standards and recommendations. . . .
> The WASP page .....
> http://www.webstandards.org/upgrade/

So far, so good. Now try either of two things.

(i) Using an "older" browser with Javascript enabled, go to (for
example) http://www.alistapart.com/ . You'll be brushed off and sent to
http://www.webstandards.org/upgrade/ (or that's what happened to me
with NS 3.0 last night; right now I lack the software to try it).

(ii) Look at the associated "Developer help and tips" page,
http://www.webstandards.org/upgrade/tips.html . If your browser isn't
up to (their idea of) snuff, you won't have much to read; if it is,
you'll see that WaSP's first recommendation is to send people packing.

WaSP recommends the latest version of one of IE, NS, Opera, or Konqueror.
Maybe I'm an unusual example, but I'm the one I know best, so here
goes: On this machine, I prefer to use Netscape 4.x (even though I have
a low opinion of it). Mere cussedness?  No. I can't use Konqueror,
because I'm using Windows. (OK, OK, I suppose I could install
Dragonlinux, then KDE, then Konqueror.) I'm in Japan and want to be
able to read Japanese; Opera is infamous for its inept handling of
double-byte character systems such as Japanese. The last time I
attempted to install MSIE (5.0, via download from MS), the process
caused *severe* crashes. (The result three-quarters works.) As far as I
know, NS is just an AOL-moronized version of Mozilla. The Mozilla I
tried out a few months ago was rough but interesting; in the meantime,
it has metamorphosized into a gargantua of code that won't get off the
ground unless it has 64MB of RAM; this machine has 32MB.

I know damn well that Netscape 4.* has an annoying "burp" when it
encounters a meta tag charset specification, that its implementation of
CSS1 is screwy, and that it's ignorant of CSS2. I don't mind being
occasionally reminded of this. But that's the limit of my patience. If
WaSP wants to encourage people to upgrade their browsers, fine. (Though
it might do so with a graphic link weighing in at less than 20kB,
pretty though that graphic is.) If on the other hand it wants to encourage
web-writers to tell would-be visitors with old browsers to buzz off, I
say to hell with WaSP.

(Meanwhile, I love Jeffrey Zeldman's collection of faces, and pillage
it for my little websites.)

Peter Evans mailto:evans@i.hosei.ac.jp
Received on Thursday, 1 March 2001 06:39:16 UTC

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