W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-bpwg@w3.org > June 2005

Re: VS: The devices-universal websites "myth" and the semantic web

From: Kai Hendry <hendry@iki.fi>
Date: Wed, 22 Jun 2005 09:55:33 +1000
To: Antti Martikainen <Antti.Martikainen@sysopen.fi>
Cc: Andrea Trasatti <atrasatti@gmail.com>, public-bpwg@w3.org
Message-ID: <20050621235531.GE18185@iki.fi>

On Tue, Jun 21, 2005 at 11:18:56PM +0300, Antti Martikainen wrote:
> >Maybe some sort of strategy with images. Currently images are the
> blockers. They're expensive to download and manipulate.
> Surely. Images will be a relevant issue when companies want to
> maintain their brand across various device groups. When there are

I don't see why an image always has to be associated with maintaining a
brand. Seeing the company name in the URL should be enough at this
point. ;)

> best practices group would be to think of the "minimum common
> nominators" for a commercial multi-device service. Also considering
> that some devices may (still in the future) have image viewing turned
> off, and it may therefore be worthwhile thinking of  CSS-only based
> solutions as a substitute. Not to mention the general alt tags etc.
> that are a must, obviously. At the moment, images are mostly a drag.

Sadly, in reality alt tags are so badly done, mobile browsers shouldn't
bother showing them (alt tags without image) at all. Like Opera does on
small screen mode. For UAs that can't turn off images (easily), I
suggest a proxy filters them out all together.

> However, even now, take a good new phone and produce a well-designed
> mobile site with images (small, well positioned, used only when
> necessary), and things go smoothly. In the future bandwidth will only
> get upwards. . And it should be remembered that user experience is not
> only about swiftness and well-targeted content; is also about pleasing
> and accurate visualisation, among other things..

Mobiles with high bandwidth are really far in the future if my
experiences of 3G are anything to go by. There is precious little you
can do to make sites "look good" on the currently deployed mobiles. So
lets not waste time with visualisation and concentrate on getting the
content onto the mobiles in any shape or form.

> useless.  No offence for the site, it's rather nice when used from a
> regular Web browser. Anyway, back to images: although images can be
> adapted on the fly, many images require multiple versions for
> providing a good user experience. Therefore, image management gets
> more challenging with multi-device sites and it would be nice to see
> some tools and guidelines for making this easier.

If the Web developers got rid of clunky tables, frames and streamlined
the HTML http://www.helsinginsanomat.fi/ would be a better site.  Though
Web practitioners who carefully "write HTML by hand" are hard to find.
Simply recommending a website to migrate to XHTML isn't the solution
either. Therefore the reality is zillions of really awful (designed or
engineered) websites to contend with.

As I said before the W3 needs to lead by lobbying the mobile vendors,
UAs and mobile operators to improve the current situation. Coming up
with the major problem list with explanations for them would be a start
to improve their practises.
Received on Tuesday, 21 June 2005 23:57:42 UTC

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