W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-html@w3.org > December 1998

Re: Alternate images for different media - a bit off the subject.

From: Inanis Brooke <alatus@earthlink.net>
Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 23:22:32 -0800
Message-ID: <000d01be3491$126713c0$0a1fb3d1@alatus>
To: <kg9ae@geocities.com>
Cc: "w3c html" <www-html@w3.org>
>Lack of implementation is the main problem.  Most webmasters
>wouldn't begin to tackle content-negotiation.  In my experience, many
>webmasters aren't willing to learn how to configure the server, either.  I
>am really not sure why.  Just because the methods aren't popular doesn't
>mean they don't exist.

I myself am a webmaster (of sorts,) and I have run a poetry-oriented website
for about a year and a half. I won't claim to know everything, but I think I
can say one thing about what's happening here. Jacques wants to know about
how he can control certain circumstances in a presentation on a TV screen.
It does not sound like it will be broadcasted over the Internet, and if that
were the case, he would be able to control every single variable. However,
for a webmaster (of sorts,) like myself, I have vitually no control
whatsoever over variables pertaining to the client application reading my
content. I have found, for example, that using percentages to define image
widths, table widths, etc. help a page grow or shrink to a browser window's
width in IE4. Unfortunately, support for this was very poor in my Netscape
attempts. Ditto for writing pages completely in HTML4/CSS. Netscape has its
own JavaScript that won't run in IE4, either.
The reason I think webmasters don't configure servers to racognize certain
hardware / software variables on the client side, is because it is not time
/ cost effective to create different versions of content for different
platforms. I think that is the reason why we still have so much hypertext
out there that doesn't conform to the W3C Specs: the bottom line is
frequently a matter of what will look good on the majority of browsers. In
my experience, the ones you have to worry about most are Netscape 2 and 3,
which have absolutely no CSS support at all! However, I also personally know
a lot of potential visitors who have been stuck on a computer that is
incapable of running a 4th generation browser.
Of course, my content is hosted by a service, so I coulndn't really
"configure my server," even though I will be using a good deal of
server-side functions.
I think that's what makes the dynamics of Jacques's question so
"interesting," is because it certainly does not pertain to a common
Web-related scenario.
Received on Thursday, 31 December 1998 02:41:36 UTC

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