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Browser Versions Are Dead (v3)

Browser Versions Are Dead (v3)

As a web developer you're surely familiar with the "IE6 Must Die" mentality of blaming old browsers (and their users) for what's holding back our industry.

But are they really to blame? Maybe not. I think what's mostly to blame is a series of lies about how browsers and sites and users interact, that we've now come to believe. We need to take a step back and rethink how we approach browsers and versions and how we develop sites/applications for them.

It's time to admit our obsession with browser versions so we can move past it. It's time we stop looking 10 years in the rear-view mirror. It's time to admit that we ourselves hold some blame for holding back our industry. It's time we start to retrain our bosses, clients, and marketing/sales departments on how our web platform really works.

When we do, we'll fully unleash our potential on the latest and greatest our platform can deliver!


Kyle Simpson

February 28, 2013


  1. browser versions are dead kyle simpson @getify http://getify.me

  2. “joe”

  3. obsession the first step to recovery is admitting you have

    a problem.
  4. browser “diversity” 24 19 12 6 10

  5. browser “diversity” 24 19 6 10

  6. None
  7. crazy town

  8. browser “diversity” raging hellish nightmare

  9. None
  10. lies, damned lies, and statistics

  11. lie: “browser versions (still) matter”

  12. arbitrary marketing labels

  13. truth: features matter

  14. analytics bloggers marketing depts

  15. None
  16. lie: “this site has to look, feel, and behave the

    SAME in all browsers and versions”
  17. truth: browsers are different ON PURPOSE

  18. bosses clients sales depts

  19. None
  20. lie: “every user matters”

  21. Netscape 4.7

  22. truth: user importance is... complicated

  23. None
  24. excuses, excuses

  25. excuse: “IE6 sucks”

  26. blame the browser

  27. None
  28. None

  30. None
  31. None
  32. None
  33. take a deep breath

  34. None
  35. excuse: “users suck”

  36. None
  37. None
  38. None
  39. None
  40. None
  41. None
  42. excuse: “it just takes so much time and effort to

    make IE6 work...”
  43. hackey hack

  44. hackey hack

  45. hackey hack

  46. hackey hack

  47. None
  48. what about “cool features”?

  49. corners

  50. gradients

  51. drop-down menus

  52. file uploading

  53. video

  54. learn your craft

  55. get over it

  56. None
  57. excuse: “web technology isn’t...ready”

  58. None
  59. None
  60. “joe” faceplant

  61. out of excuses?

  62. let’s fix it

  63. None
  64. embrace browser differences feature detection “supports ____” user choice “oh

    well” degradation regressive fallbacks progressive enhancement “reactive” design
  65. bosses retrain

  66. bosses retrain TCO

  67. clients retrain

  68. clients retrain my bill

  69. marketing & sales retrain

  70. retrain upsell marketing & sales

  71. small skirmishes

  72. open web platform browser diversity FTW

  73. Disclaimer: only one biker was harmed in the making of

    these slides.