[development] Re: [CS dev] Help with a CivicSpace Theme Layout... (Read it, you know you want to! :)

Adrian Simmons adrinux at gmail.com
Mon Nov 14 22:52:23 UTC 2005

Justin Davies wrote:
> In all honesty, I don't think you have to worry about old Macs.
Well, maybe, maybe not. It really all depends on a particular site and what the 
audience uses. Macs are reliable, they often go on for years and years. There 
are plenty out there still in active use.

> forcing people away from an 
> old, non-standards based browser on a very old Mac is not going to loose 
> too many users.
I hate to be in the position of defending a Microsoft browser but lets set some 
records straight here.

IE5 mac is an entirely different product from IE5 on Windows.
At the time IE5 mac was released it had *the* *most* *complete* web standards 
support of *any* available browser. Better than Mozilla, Opera, Konqueror, 
better than all of them.

> 90% of Mac users use Safari or a Mozilla variant, and 
> those should be the people to concentrate on.
90% of *OS X* users. There are still plenty of people out there using OS 9. As a 
percentage of the web they may be small, but they are there. IE5 mac is remains 
the best browser available for OS 9. The last versions of Mozilla available on 
OS 9 were around Mozilla 1.3 IIRC, and at that point Mozilla was still bloated 
and buggy.

> You have to bear in mind that IE users on the Mac are used to websites 
> not working properly.
Nonsense. I find most of them still work fairly well, its really only quite 
advanced CSS layouts that start to break.

> Not because the designers do it wrong, but 
> because the browser is sh*t.
Not true. That's really over stepping the mark. IE5mac is a solid browser. So 
good that despite my antipathy to Microsoft it was my main browser on OS 9 for 
quite some time, and even on OS X when it first came out.

Yes it's a dead browser. Yes OS 9 is a dead OS. Yes it has some shortcomings in 
the CSS department. Yes it has other major flaws (can't control plugins with 
javascript for one). Both have been superseded by better things. But lets not 
reject IE5mac on the basis of opinionated foul-mouthed nonsense like this.

We're about building communities, and communities are diverse things.

There are workarounds if the problem is with CSS, eg: 

Javascript gets a bit trickier, but we try to make sure that degrades gracefully 

It all boils down to this - IE5mac is decent browser used by people on an old 
OS, they make up a small and diminishing part of the webs population. If there 
is a simple and quick way of fixing problems with it then lets support it, and 
conversely if it's taking too much time to fix let it go. But at least make an 
informed decision instead of rejecting it out of hand.

adrinux (aka Adrian Simmons) <http://adrinux.perlucida.com>
e-mail <mailto:adrinux at gmail.com>
AOL/Yahoo IM: perlucida, Microsoft: adrian at perlucida.com

More information about the development mailing list