Weblogs: Web Standards

The Fallout of Netscape's demise

Wednesday, July 16, 2003

With the closure of Netscape Communications Corporation by its owners AOL, where does that leave the web authoring community?

In a positive light, Netscape Navigator 4 ceases to be a supported browser, and becomes most definitely an obsolete browser. This is good in terms of web design, since now the last reason to avoid standards based design around CSS and HTML has been removed.

Due to Netscape Communication's open source foresight, we will always have the Mozilla browser, and it will always be supportable. This standards-compliant browser will probably experience a rapid growth now that it is free of the tentacles of AOL. With Microsoft's decision not to develop and evolve a stand-alone Internet Explorer, Mozilla has the opportunity to make significant inroads into Internet Explorer's ill-gained dominance.

As web design evolves from table-hacks to standards compliant web design, there is more and more incentive for people to adopt standards-compliant web browsers - for as long as they deliver equivalent functionality.

Web designers should take Netscape's demise not as a sign to develop Internet Explorer only websites, but as a reason and encouragement to adopt a CSS approach to web design. We have started a new chapter on the World Wide Web.

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