The “Web” disease of falling behind

by Mike Badgley on July 30, 2009

The thought occurred to me this morning, as I did my daily routine of reading through my long list of RSS feeds, that I was in danger of falling behind and becoming out of touch with the current trends and standards in the world of CSS. Yes, that previous statement does sound pretty geeky, to the point where I cringe, but the truth remains.

I’m used to supporting IE6, mainly because the majority of our clients still use this as their primary browser. The problem is that getting a site to look good in IE6 means you have to sacrifice a lot of cool features that CSS2+ offers and basically everything that you can do with CSS3. Although I keep up to date and read with interest on things others are doing with these technologies, I generally refrain from researching them further and as a result do not incorporate them into my template builds.

This state of mind reminds me of a time when CSS-based layouts were fairly new and were generally workable on what was then a “modern browser”. However, if you wanted your layouts to look right across all platforms you had to go with a table-based layout, instead of trying out something new and cool, like a CSS-based layout. For some developers it was years before they adopted a fully CSS-based layout, simply because it was easier for them to continue using tables. It worked, right, so why bother changing?

But we need to change or we’ll end up as Web dinosaurs and eventually be replaced by newer and/or smarter ‘reptiles’ ;) So going forward, I believe it’s in our best interest to start not only researching new and modern methods, but implementing them as well in all our projects.

I encourage you to take a look at what’s available and workable with today’s modern browsers.