Buzz Archive: January 2003

Opera Released... Within Limits

Opera Software on Tuesday shipped version 7.0 for Windows of their Web browser, with a caveat that carries significant implications for CSS standards support.

c|net published a story on Monday which quotes Opera's CEO as saying:

“ ‘ We have contacted Apple and asked them if they want a third-party browser, and we'll see what the answer is... They could say we want to use Opera as the core engine. If they want KHTML as a simple little browser, and also something more advanced, we would be happy to provide it. Obviously, if we don't get any positive signs from Apple, then we have to think about it. ’ ”

The upshot is that Opera Software may well discontinue support for the Macintosh.

[From Steve Falkenburg by way of Tantek Çelik]

Minor Administrative Post

We have upgraded our blog software to Moveable Type version 2.5.1. The upgrade should be seamless, but if not, please cut us some slack. :)

DOM Support Resource

The tireless Peter-Paul Koch has updated his useful DOM Compatibility Tables. Look here to find browser support for DOM Levels 1 and 2, both Core and HTML. Includes information on the new Safari 1.0 and Opera 7 beta versions. (Hat tip: the mighty Glish.)

SVG 1.1 now a Recommendation

The W3C's Scalable Vector Graphics 1.1 Specification made it to full Recommendation status this week. This version incorporates the errata from SVG 1.0 and breaks the Spec up into modules that can be used as building blocks for creating focused language profiles.

Along with SVG 1.1, two such profiles for mobile devices were released as Recommendations: SVG Tiny, aimed at implementations for cell phones, and SVG Basic, which targets PDAs.

Safari in the news... Again

Today Dave Hyatt announced that Safari is going to "support XML". It's not 100% clear what this means... except to echo others in saying that the browser ecosystem is becoming an interesting place again.

DOM Level 2 HTML Spec Official

The W3C released the Document Object Model Level 2 HTML Specification today as an official Recommendation. Of particular interest is this note: This specification renders the DOM Level 1 HTML Recommendation obsolete given that some changes from DOM Level 1 HTML are incompatible with that specification but represent more accurately the state of deployed software. W3C strongly suggests that developers and authors conform to DOM Level 2 HTML instead.

For more information take a run down the list of changes from the Level 1 Recommendation.

Check, please!

For you Mozilla users out there: The current Project of the Week over at is Checky, a great little add-on that makes validating your pages so easy you'll have no excuse not to. Checky adds a submenu to Mozilla's context menu that allows you to run whatever page you're on through one of (currently) 18 different online validation and analysis services.

Even more useful, it includes Checky-Agent that will run the current page against any one or more of the services you select, all at once. Checky-Agent can be activated from the Checky menu or by simply pressing the F10 key. So, for example, you could run your page against the W3C's markup and CSS validators, the Web Design Group's HTML Validator, and Watchfire's Bobby with a single keystroke.

Safari: Fast, Incomplete

We held our breath for a day as Web citizens took Apple's new Safari browser for a test drive. Safari is obviously built for speed, with a number of optimizations made to its Konqueror-based rendering engine to boost its performance well beyond that of Mac IE5 and Mozilla variants.

However, we also hear that Safari's CSS support leaves much to be desired, and await news of the level of support for DOM and JavaScript. Safari also identifies itself in part as Mozilla/Gecko (the user-agent string actually contains "like Gecko"), potentially confounding many browser-sniffing scripts in use. If you're currently using any tricks to hide CSS from Konqueror, you may consider adding "Safari" to that as well.

Luckily, both praise and complaints spread quickly across the Web community, and the Safari developers are listening. Expect to see this new beastie appear in your server logs as thousands of Mac users jump to Safari to escape the numbing slowness of other OS X browsers. Meanwhile, we'll keep an eye on this new browser as it moves from beta to final release.