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17 May 2005

You are not enjoying the full potential of this CSS page

You don't want to, but we keep buggering you anyway

I browse a lot with lynx, a text only browser. Some websites do nice appearances with CSS, which is a fine thing. Among some of CSSs virtues is the ability to degrade the presentation gracefully for browsers that don't get CSS. Whatever happens, the content should come through for example in a text only browser like lynx. But some websites get on my nerves complaining about lack of CSS support in my browser.

CSS also has the ability to hide some text on the page. This is used almost exclusively for displaying a blurb like "You are not seeing this page at its full potential. Get a fancier browser to see how elite we are!" Usually this fills a hefty paragraph in lynx. Screen realestate that I have to page over. Bad enough if it's at the end of the page, much worse if it's at the start of the page. And much to my disliking if I'm online by GPRS (pay for data) or on an expensive dialup line. Did I mention that this blurb appears on every page, not just the first one?

I browse a lot with lynx, because I'm interested in the content only or I am on some expensive connection. Text only browsing means speed, no images, no fancy graphics rendering, no loading of CSS or other auxiliary documents. Other people use lynx, because they have to (lynx is a choice for blind people). Of course lynx does not do CSS. There would be no point in doing CSS, there are no fonts to set, no backgrounds to color, no margins to size.

Today there are only 3 kinds of browsers in use: Those who do CSS, those who do CSS but wrong, those who deliberately don't do CSS. If you browse in the 3rd category, you know it. Site developers might as well drop that annoying "no css!" blurb. It's barking up the wrong tree. And it leaves a stale bad taste from the "wanna be forgotten" days of the "this site best viewed with..." web. The crowd that really has a problem (those whose browser does CSS but wrong) will not see that blurb anyway.

Posted by betabug at 07:13 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
ch athens
Life in Athens (Greece) for a foreigner from the other side of the mountains. And with an interest in digital life and the feeling of change in a big city. Multilingual English - German - Greek.
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