New website ?

Mike Meyer mwm at
Thu Jan 12 14:43:41 EST 2006

Tim Parkin <tim at> writes:
> Mike Meyer wrote:
>> Of course, this is typical on the web: "Works in IE" really means
>> "works in IE in the configurations we tested it for", and usually
>> means "works in our favorite configuration".
> Actually the site has been tested on every browser listed on
> and a few extras...

Sorry. I didn't mean to imply that this was the attitude taken for the
new python site. I was grousing about the state of the web in
general. The new python site is still in testing, and I know such
misbehaviors may be because of that rather than your attitude. A
depressing percentage of web sites go into production with such
problems intact, though. Nice to see that isn't going to be
one of them.

> Whilst it doesn't work on ie4 (although it is readable) it does work on
> netscape 4.x (albeit with a much simpler css layout dedicated for just
> this browser) and it has also been optimised to work in lynx/links and
> has been partially tested in some speech readers.. However, since this
> testing there has been some changes made and instead of continually
> testing across all configurations, we're planning on running another
> browser check soon.

Which answered my next question - which was about testing with things
like JavaScript disabled, major CSS hackery, ignoring author
fonts/colors, and in text-only browsers. I'm still dissapointed that
the FreeBSD site loses Beastie if your browser is set to ignore
authors colors (or should, anyway).

>> In particular, creating a good-looking design that remains readable in
>> all possible browser configurations is impossible. Getting one that is
>> readable in all reasonable browser configurations is hard, unless you
>> make your definition of "reasonable" very narrow.
> Not quite impossible but I agree it's pretty hard, especially using css
> for layout and trying to follow w3c guidelines (e.g. the relative font
> sizing thing)... However our aim is to make the site readable in all
> browsers in the majority of normal configurations.

Well, "all possible browser configurations" include things like
browser windows that are only 10s of pixels wide along with fonts
sizes measured in the hundreds. I think you're justified in ignoring
those, though.

Mike Meyer <mwm at>
Independent WWW/Perforce/FreeBSD/Unix consultant, email for more information.

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