Paul wrote:
This is more of a general standards question, but if you are designing a
page for the public in general (in my case a university) at what point (
% wise _or_ # of browsers) do you say 'Okay this is the site, no more
trying to accommodate obscure browsers/older versions of browsers." ? I
know there is no stand pat answer but I would like to know what
particular people use and if there is a common thinking.

Really depends on the audience, the client, etc but I usually draw the line at "5th generation" browsers (MSIE5+, Opera 5+, Netscape 6/7, Firefox, Mozilla, Safari, etc)

Having said that... if you use structured, valid (x)HTML and CSS, people who for some reason still use an antique browser should still be able to use the site. HTML is not print. Pixel perfection is not achievable in an uncontrolled environment.

That's my general approach anyway and I'm not too fussed about IE5.0 unless logs show a lot of visitors use it (as long as it's still usable). Matters little to me if the site does not *look* quite the same, as long as it's usable.

Make it valid and accessible. Don't add ##kB of CSS hacks, nested tables, spacer images and deprecated elements/attributes to make the site "pixel perfect" for 1 visitor a month who uses an antique browser.

Percentage? Again, depends on the intended audience. If you're in the business of selling computers, would you ignore a small percentage of visitors with old browsers (on old computers)? What if you were selling software that can only be operated by expert users with the latest equipment? Different audience.

Bert Doorn, Better Web Design
Fast-loading, user-friendly websites

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