Netscape 4 and standards compliant pages

I’m no big fan of Netscape 4 anymore, but there are times when I have to use it. Notably, when I’m on my boss’s computer and he specifically doesn’t want to see a long trail of places I visit. I’m the tech guy. He’s not interested in the stuff I look into.)
I accept that many pages are going to look better in standards-compliant browsers than in Netscape 4. But they should at least render somewhat legibly. There is such a thing as overdoing the standards support.
MozillaZine (which graciously hosts this weblog) is utterly incoherent in Netscape 4.x. At the time I supported their move to break compatibility with Netscape 4.x, but now seeing that you can’t read a damn thing on the main page for MZ, I’m really annoyed about it. Their page validates as HTML 4.01 Strict.
There are other people whose “advanced” and/or “standards-compliant” pages look like garbage in Netscape 4. I thought the idea of complying to W3C Recommendations was to help make HTML pages *MORE* readable by every kind of browser, not less!
Even worse when someone does the “This page is built for such-and-such browser, and if you’re using an inferior browser, you really suck.” Again, I don’t have a choice sometimes which browser I use (say, at the library when I’m stuck with IE6). Which really stinks when I’m trying to read Ben Goodger’s weblog!
Of course, when I’m on my Mozilla or Firefox builds, I usually have a totally opposite opinion (why the hell are you using Netscape 4.x?). But when you make it harder for “lesser creatures” to read your pages, that’s self-defeating in evangelism.

One thought on “Netscape 4 and standards compliant pages”

  1. Mozillazine and many other standards-based sites are perfectly readable in Netscape 4 IF you turn off stylesheets (in the advanced preferences). As a bonus, I’ve found that Netscape 4 is far more stable with stylesheets turned off. It used to be that Mozillazine did not send style sheets to Netscape 4. I wonder why they changed?

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