Friday, March 19, 2010

Every HTML/CSS coder’s dream

Every HTML and CSS coder out there with any semblance of clue is eager awaiting the day when no one is using Internet Explorer 6 any more, and dreams of the day no one is using Internet Explorer 7 either.

For example, the last two days at my new job, I have been designing some web pages as per the client’s specifications. The client wanted a certain type of navigation bar, which I implemented using a pure CSS design. It looked great in Firefox, Opera, and Safari.

It looked ugly in Internet Explorer 6. I had to spend over an hour redesigning the navigation bar using a table-inside-table design. Once I did that, I had to spend about another hour doing more workarounds so the design would look good in IE6 and Internet Explorer 7.

I would have been done with the entire site design right now if IE6 and IE7 weren’t used by anyone. Since I had to spend hours working around these browsers’ bugs, I won’t be able to finish things until this afternoon.

I know of four web stat sites who freely give out their numbers on Internet Explorer by version number. Here are the current numbers:

SiteIE6 usageIE7 usage

We probably won’t see IE6 numbers go below 2% until 2012; IE7 (which, while buggy, is a lot more pleasant to work with than IE6) will probably linger with numbers higher than 2% until 2015 or so. So, yeah, I will be wasting a lot of time with these ancient browsers and their bugs for a while longer.

Update: I’m not the only one eagerly awaiting IE6’s death. YouTube has just dropped IE6 support and puts up a big “Upgrade your browser” banner visible only in IE6.