Speaking of browsers and websites ... OK. I give. I surrender.
You may think I'm speaking of abandoning Navigator 4 support. Au contraire! I'm abandoning the attempt to figure out (1) why the style sheet for this site, despite validating, breaks in Netscape 6/Mozilla, and (2) why, despite my best efforts to do so, it doesn't break in Navigator 4.X. (Rather, it breaks in only insignificant ways. This despite the fact that I've functionally abandoned Navigator 4 support since it's only used by 8% of the people who surf by here.)
I ran across the Navigator 4 issue when I first redesigned the site to work with CSS. Basically, everything I read said that Navigator 4 couldn't handle a three column CSS layout, just don't worry about it, the browser won't be able to handle it so the style sheet will break and it will degrade gracefully.
Only ... it didn't break. In fact, in its original version, it was substantially the same layout across all browsers and platforms. This is not to say that Navigator 4 liked the layout, you understand -- if you surfed to this site and Navigator was having a bad day, it crashed immediately. It was also considerably more finnicky about closed tags than any of the other browsers. But still, as long as I remembered to do that, it essentially displayed as desired.
Recently, I decided to get rid of the left column. Redesigned the logo block slightly. And that's it. (Seriously, compare the front page to this one and you'll see that it's just a design tweak rather than some sort of substantial change.) For some reason, this affected the way that the DIVs line up in Navigator; the right sidebar is now inside and at the bottom of the main content section. Eh. Whatever. The content displays OK, and that's the important bit. I actually included an invisible block, as recommended, to break Navigator 4 display; I also upgraded certain aspects to CSS2, which isn't supported at all in Navigator 4. It cheerfully ignored the invisible class block, mangled the CSS2 in a way which is actually somewhat interesting to look at and displayed anyway. Weird.
Netscape 6/Mozilla, on the other hand, has broken quite badly. I'm guessing that it has inconsistent support for CSS2, since the old style sheet, which was pure CSS1, generally displayed without issues.
I'm definitely never going to be a high end web site designer, I can tell you that right now.
UPDATE: OK, even weirder? Now, for no apparent reason, Netscape 6.2.1, built on a Mozilla base, renders the site, no problem. Mozilla 0.9.8, however, is still AWOL on the style sheet.Posted by iain at February 19, 2002 11:34 AM
Long as we get to read you, it's all good.Posted by George at February 19, 2002 01:38 PM