Positive Review of Netscape 6's Standards Support at ITWorld

Sunday June 4th, 2000

Kevin Davis (k3davis) sent in a link to a very positive look at Netscape 6's standards support at ITWorld. Included is a glossary describing many of the standards as well as some of Mozilla's own technologies.

#4 I want to love Mozilla

by hubick <>

Monday June 5th, 2000 9:08 PM

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I really want to love Mozilla, but it is hard.

First let me state that it is a goal in my life to do whatever I can to support standards. I think computing standards are all that stand between mankind and our ability to _really_ apply our technology. Also, as someone who has to maintain altogether too much lowest common denominator web sites at work, my personal site (<>) is my voice to say how _I_ think a web site should be designed. My web site is designed to adhere to the strictest versions of all the latest standards, currently strict xhtml 1.0. I use all PNG images (burn all gifs!). etc, etc. Although I am a web geek, I'm not trying to purposely push my site beyond reach of a reasonable browser. Anything I use on my site is designed to degrade gracefully to any older browser, yet due to partial or buggy suppport, mozilla breaks. I have been walking around for the past year telling everyone I know that Mozilla is more important than the second coming of Christ (or whatever), but I'm starting to get dissapointed.

All I have ever wanted in life is a browser with good standard support. Something that can display my web site. Now, I figure my site is pretty basic, and it sure is no box acid test. But throught the course of Mozilla's development it has never once been able to do a better job of displaying it than IE has.

First problems with PNG transparency ( <>) broke my images, or at least made them look terrible (half stransparent). I finally gave up on them and got rid of the transparency. After HTML itself, images are about as basic a request as I can make from a browser. PNG is THE unencumbered image standard for the web, it has been a standard for years now, IE get's it right for me, Moz doesn't.

I have been a web geek right from the start. I sat around for years whining about style sheets and getting stamped as a purist while Netscape and MS did all they could to not follow the standards and ruin what I felt the web should be. Now that browser manufacturers have come to their bloody senses and realized what some have known all along, I finally can separate my presentation from my structure. Or so I thought. I am a big XML geek as well (I wrote a parser and have implemented DOM). Naturally, the release of XML is something I awaited for a long time. XHTML, which now replaces HTML 4 is the best thing to every happen to the web. XHTML allows me to create a web page devoid of the years of legacy cruft. XHTML and style sheets is the web the way I always wanted it. Enter bug 39330 (<>) My whole website validates as _strict_ XHTML, and follows all the guidlines for maximizing backward compatibility with HTML user agents. One of these is to serve XML with an HTML mime type (XHTML spec sec 5.1 <>) Yet the bug noted above means doings this causes the browser to instantly implode.

I don't give a go**amn f**k about Skinnablility, Mail, News, CSS3, JavaScript, DOM2, or anything. That can all come later. I just want a browser that will bloody well display _basic_ standard compliant web pages.

I will give the great folks at Mozilla and Netscape kudos for fixing <> as at least now I can launch the browser (on my win2k box) to have it crash on my site.

And don't take this the wrong way. I still think Mozilla will be the second coming of Christ (or whatever), I just think the priorities of some bugs and development resources need realigment. PNG (with alpha), XHTML strict, and CSS1 should have been the first things with 100% conformance (before even frames, javascript, and animated gifs were added). It is those things which form the very basis of a modern standards compliant web.

Rant off.