HTML and CSS Reference
by your target audience. A good source of statistics is http://www.thecounter.com/stats.
Develop the site so that it looks great in your target audience's most popular browser
and looks acceptable (degrades gracefully) in other browsers. Visit http://www.upsdell.
com/BrowserNews for timely information about current browsers.
Always try to test your pages in the most popular versions of browsers and in the
newest versions. At the time of this writing, these are Firefox 3, Internet Explorer 8,
Safari (both Mac and Windows versions), Opera 10, and Google's Chrome browser.
While it is possible to install multiple versions of Firefox on the same computer, dual
installs cannot easily be done with Internet Explorer. Unless you have multiple comput-
ers to work with, test with the most popular version of Internet Explorer. If you can, it
is also a good idea to test your pages on both the Mac and PC platforms.
Large information technology departments and Web design firms will dedicate a num-
ber of computers with various operating systems and browser versions for compatibility
testing. Many Web page components, including default text size and default margin
size, are different among browsers, browser versions, and operating systems.
Higher resolutions are becoming more popular. The most commonly used screen resolu-
tions are currently 1024
1024. Design your pages to avoid
horizontal scrolling at these resolutions. However, depending on your target audience,
you still may have some visitors using 640
800, and 1280
480 screen resolution! Also, be mindful that
mobile web browsers have very low screen resolution. One way to create a page that
looks good in multiple screen resolutions is to center the entire page. Refer back to
Section 3.9 Centering Elements with CSS for code samples.
Which screen resolution is everyone using?
A recent survey by Net Applications (http://marketshare.hitslink.com/report.aspx?qprid=17)
reported that 1024 × 768 is currently the most popular screen resolution. Of visitors surveyed,
30 percent use 1024 × 768, 20 percent use 1280 × 800, 11 percent use 1280 × 1024, 9 percent
use 1440 × 900, 6 percent use 1680 × 1050, and less than 4 percent use 800 × 600.
A wireframe is a sketch or blueprint of a Web page that shows the structure (but not
the detailed design) of basic page elements such as the logo, navigation, content, and
footer. Depending on the purpose of a particular Web site, the wireframe may incorpo-
rate additional components including pull quotes, news items, and interactive features
such as a login or search function. Wireframes are used as part of the design process to
experiment with various page layouts, develop the structure and navigation of the site,
and provide a basis for communication among project members. Figures 5.25 through
5.27 can be considered very basic wireframes. See the textbook website at http://www.
webdevfoundations.net/5e/chapter5.html, for more detailed examples.