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Martian Headsets and The State of Web Standards

brajesh (847246) writes | more than 6 years ago

Programming 0

brajesh writes "Joel on Software has a very lengthy but extremely insightful article on the state of web standards today. Joel writes — "Why are 'web standards' so frigging messed up? (It's not just Microsoft's fault. It's your fault too. And Jon Postel's [Robustness Principle]...". He quotes Eric Bangeman of ars technica — "The IE team has to walk a fine line between tight support for W3C standards and making sure sites coded for earlier versions of IE still display correctly. This is incorrect. It's not a fine line. It's a line of negative width. There is no place to walk. They are damned if they do and damned if they don't." Joel puts forth an example — "Look at the scenario from the customer's standpoint. You visit 100 websites a day. You then upgraded to IE 8. On half of them, the page is messed up, and Google Maps doesn't work at all. You're going to tell your friends, "Don't upgrade to IE 8. It messes up every page, and Google Maps doesn't work at all." Are you going to View Source to determine that website X is using nonstandard HTML, and Google Maps doesn't work because it is using non-standard JavaScript objects from old versions of IE that were never accepted by the standards committee? Of course not. You're going to uninstall IE 8." In essence it's a struggle between the pragmatists and the idealists, "precisely on the fault line smack in the middle of two different ways of looking at the world. It's the difference between conservatives and liberals, it's the difference between "idealists" and "realists," it's a huge global jihad dividing members of the same family, engineers against computer scientists, and Lexuses vs. olive trees.""
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