10. Web browsers and standards

There are many web browsers that you can use to view web pages, e.g.

  • Firefox
  • Chrome
  • Internet Explorer
  • Opera
  • Safari

browsersThey all use slightly different methods to enable you to view web pages.   When Netscape was a prominent browser, web designers wrote HTML code that worked with Netscape, but they would also make sure that the code could cope with Internet Explorer which was the other main browser.

But now there are many browsers that can be used to view web pages and it is frustrating to web developers that each may render their web pages in slightly different ways (depending on the complexity of the page). The rise of the tablet and other mobile devices have added to the difficulty.

Some of the problems that might be encountered:

  • Colours may appear different
  • The size of the font may look different
  • The browser may not recognise the font and may display a basic or standard font
  • The layout of the page may appear differently because of the way the browser treats tables
  • Plug-ins such as Flash, Shockwave etc may work on some browsers and not others
  • Script languages might work slightly differently in different browsers

There are efforts underway to try and create a web standard such as HTML 5 and CSS 3 but even now, in the second decade of the 21st century, each browser treats these standards differently.


challenge see if you can find out one extra fact on this topic that we haven't already told you

Click on this link: Browser Standards