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The Way of the Exploding Web-Browser

By ni2sml ·
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Elasticated pictures and the lameness that is IE CSS handling

by ni2sml In reply to The Way of the Exploding ...

The latest IE wierdness to send me over to the nearest wall, needing to beat my head off it in frustration, seems to be related to it's handling of explicitly defined <strong>height: auto</strong> for an image.<br /><br />I had a CSS property looking like this:<br /><br /><br />.large img {<br /> width: 18.75em;<br /> height: auto;<br />}<br /><br />On proper standards-compliant browsers like Firefox this looked great, and of course was elastic - changing size with all the other em-sized stuff on the page. The height was figured out automatically (not all the pictures this is used on are the same aspect, so I couldn't hard-code the height) and all was well with the world.<br /><br />Until we realised the images were getting squished to the wrong height on IE6...at least until you browsed to another page then used BACK to return to the messed up image, where it would magically display correctly.<br /><br />Turned out removing the height property entirely fixed the problem in IE. I guess implicit auto height is != explicit auto height in the warped world of IE CSS layout. Go figure.

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More grey hairs, thanks to 3px jog and box expansion in IE

by ni2sml In reply to The Way of the Exploding ...

Wow, only my second post and it's another IE gripe...maybe I should rename the blog to something like "The I ****ing HATE Internet Explorer Blog" ;-)<br /><br /> Anyway, <a href="http://www.used-wheelchairs-usa.com/">our site</a> was suffering the <a href="http://www.positioniseverything.net/explorer/threepxtest.html">IE 3px gap</a> layout problem, which in itself is mildly annoying, but for some reason was also causing certain elements to be forced down below the end of the navigation, leaving a big whitespace in the middle of the content. My fix was to float the content using the <a href="http://css-discuss.incutio.com/?page=StarHtmlHack">* html</a> hack (YAY! Relying on a bug to fix a bug. Way to go, IE!) which has pretty much the same effect as setting <strong>height: 1%</strong> (forces IE to use the float model, by means of ANOTHER bug).<br /><br />We had a nice, prominent, graphical button showcasing a major feature of our site, right in the middle of the home page, which would cause the entire floating content to be thrown down below the navigation. Ugh.<br /><br />More research, grey hairs, and the discovery of the <a href="http://www.positioniseverything.net/explorer/expandingboxbug.html">IE/Win Expanding Box Bug</a>, the cause of our problem.<br /><br />So far I can find only two solutions:<br /><ul><li><strong>Forcing the page width.</strong> NO. NO, and NO. Absolutely not. The site is meant to be fluid, not constrained to some stupid pixel limit.</li><li><strong>Reducing the width of the image.</strong> This is the one I went with (I think it looks better that way anyway).</li></ul><br />There is probably a perfectly good workaround which would have helped, but I have other things to do besides fighting IE all day over one little thing. Life's too short.

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Microsoft and deliberate acts of standards sabotage

by ni2sml In reply to The Way of the Exploding ...

While CSS bug hunting earlier I stumble upon <a href="http://www.positioniseverything.net/articles/poll/star-html.php">this post about the * html hack maybe being broken in IE7</a>.<br /><br />Now, I have very few IE hacks in my code, but the few that are there are of the * html variety. Many web developers are going to be less fortunate, I'm sure.<br /><br />The paranoid, black-helicopter fearing, open-source zealot in me suggests this must be their attempt, once again, to make us all forget there are <a href="http://www.mozilla.com/firefox/">other browsers</a> out there and code only for their users. Sorry, ain't gonna happen.<br /><br />If it wasn't a commercial site I'd make it <a href="http://host.sonspring.com/boxes/">deliberately broken in IE</a>, just to make a statement.<br /><br />Just as well there are conditional comments, maybe it's time to plan ahead before the site gets any bigger...unless of course Microsoft plan on breaking <strong>that</strong>, too.

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Microsoft and deliberate acts of standards sabotage

by geekster In reply to Microsoft and deliberate ...

Instead of making it broken in IE, why not simply pop up a message that advises users that IE is likely to be less secure than, say, Opera or Firefox?  That way, you don't chase off potential business, but provide a service by reminding users of the security holes in IE.

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Elasticated fonts - but what about the forms?

by ni2sml In reply to The Way of the Exploding ...

Maybe it's just the time of morning (not a morning person) but it seems like changing the font sizes in IE (via <em>View>Text Size</em&gt doesn't have <strong>any</strong> effect on form fields.<br /><br />Cute.

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Microsoft search-related patent applications

by ni2sml In reply to The Way of the Exploding ...

Interesting article about <a href="http://www.seobythesea.com/?p=91">Microsoft patent applicatons related to web search</a>. Possible future direction of <a href="http://search.msn.com/">MSN Search</a>?<br />

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Google and the "sandbox effect"

by ni2sml In reply to The Way of the Exploding ...

There may not be clear consensus on whether the "Google sandbox" really exists, or if it is, like unicorns and leprechauns, a mythical creature, but from where I'm standing, there certainly seems to be something holding us out of any worthwhile Google rankings for our < 3 month old site.<br /><br />SEOmoz has an article about <a href="http://www.seomoz.org/blogdetail.php?ID=701">figuring out if you're in the sandbox</a>, I'll have to see what I turn up.

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Open source development and security

by ni2sml In reply to The Way of the Exploding ...

InformationWeek has this article entitled "<a href="http://www.informationweek.com/news/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=175801235&pgno=1">Linux Security: A Good Thing Keeps Getting Better</a>".<br /><br />Anyone who seriously thinks Windows is more secure than Linux/Unix, or that the open-source development model can't produce secure, mature code, needs to read this and then reconsider their position.

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Anyone for a slice of green bacon?

by ni2sml In reply to The Way of the Exploding ...

The boundaries of science and progress just keep being pushed further. The <a href="http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/01/12/fluorescent_pig/">best ever flourescent green pigs</a> have been bred!<br /><br />Apparently there are useful medical research applications for this. Hey, if it eventually helps find a cure for cancer they can make them bright purple with orange stripes for all I care.<br /><br />Equally practical, and something I'm sure they didn't consider, is the market for St Patricks' Day specialities. Imagine having a side of glowing green ham with your green Guinness...<br /><br />OK...maybe not.<br />

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301 Permanent Redirect (or: dude, where

by ni2sml In reply to The Way of the Exploding ...

I've moved the "Cyan Screen of Discomfort" blog over to my own domain name, it can be found at <a href="http://paulglover.net/cyanscreen/">paulglover.net/cyanscreen</a> now.<br /><br />Fixing the theming is fairly high on the priority list, but for now it's there and it works. Probably. ;-)<br />

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