Satisfy everyone

Recently, I’ve been moving towards an attitude that I want to satisfy as many users as possible, which means that everyone should be able to see and use the web sites I build. To me, it feels kind of like a Google philosophy, to reach as many users as possible with really easy to use interfaces.

It has gone so far that I even avoid JavaScript enabled in the user’s web browser (people that have worked with me previously problably won’t believe this, I love JavaScript!). But it’s more about what it’s worth, that one doesn’t use functions, scripts, plug-ins etc just for the sake of it, but to actually use it when it is motivated and gives a necessary enchancement to the web site/page.

I mean, how many times haven’t one done very advanced things on a web page, that one has been particurarly pleased about, but then it looks different on another computer, doesn’t work in a third one just because, for instance, script is disabled and so on.

No, I have moved more in a direction where, instead of using advanced functions in the client’s web browser, try to create web user interfaces that are managed through CSS and where content and its looks is totally separated, as in the brilliant example CSS Zen Garden, where evry page has the same HTML and the CSS takes care of everything that has to do with how it looks and its layout.

Also, I really like when web sites gives the user an option to change font size for the current web site/page without the need of going into the web browser settings just to achieve that.

I’m also of the firm belief that to reach the major audience (i.e. “all” users) then it’s vital to make it as easy to use as possible for them., I believe most inexperienced users is bothered/discouraged by texts like:

“Optimized resolution for this site is 800*600”

“You need to have JavaScript enabled in your web browser to be able to use this web site”

“You have to install Flash to hear our epileptic music and to see our bouncing circles”

I think the future is to follow the W3C recommendations that most web browsers have a pretty good support for today (except for, mainly, the PC version of Internet Explorer) to reach as many users as possible.
To start thinking about the end user and show them respect, instead of just complaining about their lack of knowledge and thinking that they’re ignorant.

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