Alternative Browsers: Reminder to Web Developers

Due to the proliferation of alternative web browsers web developers can no longer design websites simply for Internet Explorer. Web design standards should be followed for the broadest audience possible. Some great sources for web developers include the Mozilla Developer Center andDevOpera, which is Opera’s community resource site. Not only do these sites offer extensive information for developers but common sense dictates that they are the best place to start since they are after all the leading alternative browsers. For a more sound website design I have given some tips you can follow:

1. Follow web standards - Already mentioned earlier, I cannot emphasize this fact enough. There are times when it might make more sense for you to bend (even break) some of the rules but make sure that if you do break only those that are safe to break and that won’t result in a completely unviewable or (even if viewable) worthless user experience. Of course you will have to do research and learn which rules are safe to break and not.

2. Validate your Code - You can validate your code by directly inputing your code in a validator, uploading a file, or pasting your website’s URL. There are plenty of validators in the internet so this shouldn’t be a problem.

3. Do not rely on browser detection - If doing preliminary research on your visitors make sure to detect not only the kind of browsers used but the actual capabilities. This is because capabilities differ even with the same browsers due to different versions as well as plug-ins used.

4. Test it on as many browsers as possible - If you want your website to really work and be aesthetically pleasing in most alternative browsers then you have to actually test it on as many browsers as possible to checkout how the layout appears.

Go back