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RE: compatibility

From: John Foliot - bytown internet <foliot@bytowninternet.com>
Date: Tue, 16 Jul 2002 07:54:05 -0400
To: "Robert Neff" <robert.neff@uaccessit.com>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <GKEFJJEKDDIMBHJOGLENKEAGCJAA.foliot@bytowninternet.com>


If you are not already aware of the Web Standards Project (WaSP -
http://www.webstandards.org) you might want to give them a visit.  This
battle was started in 1998, and for the most part has already been won.  The
issue is not that the browser manufacturers aren't listening and moving
forward, but rather that users (in particular large institutions) refuse to
get with the program and upgrade their baseline browsers.  NN4.x is more
than 5 years old now (NN4.0B1 - Dec. 1996), and the last build of Netscape 4
(4.5 - subsequent versions simply addressed bugs) was released in 1998.

There needs to be a reasonible expectation that users will seek to upgrade
and improve their browsers (especially given the cost factor <grin>).  And
so, code to the standards and not to the browsers!  The matrix you seek
would be almost impossible to compile, given the variety of browsers on the
market, the different operating systems in use, not to mention alternative
user agents such as cell phones, Web TV and PDA's - the different
combinations are almost limitless.

WaSP's current headlines include a piece on a company known as 37signals, a
web design outfit.  They include the following interesting piece of code on
their web site:

<div class="oldbrowsers">
	<strong>Please note:</strong> This site's design is only visible in a
graphical browser that supports Web standards, but its content is accessible
to any browser or Internet device. To see this site as it was designed
please <a href="http://www.webstandards.org/upgrade/" title="The Web
Standards Project's BROWSER UPGRADE initiative.">upgrade to a Web standards
compliant browser</a>.



> -----Original Message-----
> From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org]On
> Behalf Of Robert Neff
> Sent: July 15, 2002 1:51 PM
> To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
> Subject: RE: compatibility
> I am referencing Greg's remarks.
> A negative connotation could be inferred by this. Yet we see this
> already but in another form and that is "works best with this browser
> and version" and I will not state the web sites and browsers.
> I would like to see a compliance matrix that would be a reference tool
> developers, managers and professionals could refer.  I would not be
> opposed to putting an accessibility statement that states "we have
> designed our site to meet the W3C and 508 requirements, however, here is
> how your web browser or assistive device interprets the guidelines."
> Maybe interpret is a misleading word, however, maybe there is a more
> appropriate word, but I think the point is made.
> This is where we would need a matrix for everyone to view AND THIS WOULD
> Does the page authoring tools group have anything like this?
> Robert Neff
> robert.neff@uaccessit.com
> 214.213.1979
Received on Tuesday, 16 July 2002 07:54:11 UTC

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