Exploding the Browser Myth
by Totsie Marine
Browsers are the software used to display your website online. There are many programs available, but the most common ones are Firefox, Internet Explorer (IE), Chrome and Safari. Each of these programs come in versions for PC, Mac, Linux and other operating systems and they are updated fairly often to keep up with new web technology.
In an attempt to make websites easy to read for everyone, the W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) has defined web standards that all browsers should meet, however, Internet Explorer has been the slowest to adopt the standards.
Even among the standards compliant browsers, there are differences in how they display your website. This means that your web developer has to spend time debugging your site so that it will render correctly. For this reason, most developers limit the browsers that they support. At Webonobo, we have decided to save our clients money by not supporting IE6 or older since such a small percentage of viewers are using that version.
Changing technology is the name of the online game and website owners need to make it part of their game plan as well. Take a look at your site using different browsers and become aware of what browser/operating system combinations your customers are using by reviewing your website statistics. Work with your website developer to address any discrepancies you see or hear about. Until all browsers are standards compliant, patient debugging will be required to make your site look great for all viewers.