On Browser Testing
Post from April 10, 2012 (↻ December 12, 2016), filed under Web Development.
This and many other posts are also available as a pretty, well-behaved e-book: On Web Development.
The primary goal for cross-browser testing is to make sure that documents are usable and consistent across different user agents and devices. Even if you understand this to entail both functionality and design, the definition of “usable” can be quite interesting.
Three ideas look particularly important when attempting a definition:
A document should look as intended in all major user agents and devices, yet shouldn’t apply excessive force towards pixel perfection.
A document should be fully functional in all major user agents and devices, yet make smart use of graceful degradation.
A document should be operable within acceptable user and user agent boundaries, acknowledge that there are user preferences and device constraints outside of a developer’s control, and deem a certain degree of user engagement to be reasonable, like (vertical) scrolling, zooming, and rotating.
I’d like to probe these statements—please share your thoughts.
About the Author
Jens Oliver Meiert is a technical lead and author (sum.cumo, W3C, O’Reilly). He loves trying things, including in the realms of philosophy, art, and adventure. Here on meiert.com he shares and generalizes and exaggerates some of his thoughts and experiences.
If you have any thoughts or questions (or recommendations) about what he writes, leave a comment or a message.
Have a look at the most popular posts, possibly including:
Perhaps my most relevant book: CSS Optimization Basics (2018). Writing CSS is a craft. As craftspeople we strive to write high quality CSS. In CSS Optimization Basics I lay out the, at least some of the most important aspects of such CSS.
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