I don’t care about Opera Mini (I’m not its Product Manager). In the same way, I don’t care about walking sticks, wheelchairs, mobility scooters or guide dogs. But I care deeply about people who use enabling technologies — and Opera Mini is an enabling technology. It allows people on feature phones, low-powered smartphones, people in low-bandwidth areas, people with very small data plans, people who are roaming (you?) connect to the web.
The proxy browser Opera Mini is one of the most popular mobile browsers in the world, and rightly so. Ire Aderinokun has put together a handy collection—based on caniuse.com data—of all the features that are unavailable or only partially available in that browser. The point here is not to avoid using these features, but to make sure you’ve got a solid fallback in place:
This isn’t about bashing the problem, but figuring out the solution.
Bruce gives a great run-down of what’s involved in creating one of those new-fangled progressive apps that everyone at Google and Opera (and soon, Mozilla) are talking about: a secure connection, a service worker, and a manifest file.
Crucially, in browsers that don’t support it, you have a normal website. It’s perfect progressive enhancement.
Funnily enough, this here website—adactio.com—is technically a progressive app now.
At their simplest, Progressive Web Apps are application-like things hosted on your web server. If you’re as old as me, you might call them “web sites”
We need the Internet of Things to be the next step in the series that began with the general purpose PC and continued with the Internet and general purpose protocols—systems that support personal autonomy and choice. The coming Internet of Things envisions computing devices that will intermediate every aspect of our lives. I strongly believe that this will only provide the envisioned benefits or even be tolerable if we build an Internet of Things rather than a CompuServe of Things.
Using Progressive Enhancement makes your site better for all users and enables the 275 million users of Opera Mini worldwide.
Kenneth has isolated Chrome’s dev tools into its own app. This is a big step towards this goal:
Why are DevTools still bundled with the browsers? What if clicking “inspect element” simply started an external DevTools app?
With DevTools separated from one specific browser, a natural next step would be making the DevTools app work with other browsers.
I mentioned this a little while back, but it’s worth remembering just how many people are using Opera Mini …and how many more are about to join them.
Bring it on!
A cute videolette on web standards.
This is what Scott Jenson has been working on—a first stab at just-in-time interactions by having physical devices broadcasting URLs.
Walk up and use anything
Opera Mini is about to be installed as the default browser on a few more million phones.
Francis Spufford—author of the excellent Backroom Boffins—writes a cover story for the New Humanist magazine remembering Iain Banks with the middle initial M firmly to the fore: it was Iain M Banks—and his creation, The Culture—that took the seemingly passé genre of space opera to new heights.
A good history lesson in rendering engines: KHTML, WebKit, and now, Blink.
A cautionary tale from Stuart. We, the makers of modern technology, are letting people down. Badly.
We’re in this to help users, remember: not just the ones who think as we do, but the ones who rely on us to build things for them because they don’t know what they’re doing. If your response is honestly “well, he should have spent more on a phone to get something better”, then I’m exceedingly disillusioned by you.
Brad is on a roll. He knocks it out of the park again, this time talking about the difference between supporting the huge range of mobile browsers out there compared to trying to optimise for them.
It’s Opera …but it’s folk.
An eye-opening insight into web usage on mobile devices in Asia from Paul Rouget.
In an attempt to “optimise” performance, T-Mobile and Orange are actually breaking jQuery.
Here’s a video of the mobile browser panel I moderated at Mobilism in Amsterdam today. It gets fairly technical for a while but it was mostly a lot of fun.
A rather vicious evaluation of browser support for the audio element and the audio API. It is divided up into:
- Browsers From Companies That Actually Care About HTML5 Audio
- Browsers From Companies That Hate the Web Enough to Not Support Ogg/Vorbis, but do Have an Audio Tag So They Can Say They Have an Audio Tag (Seriously, Fuck You)
- Browsers That Say They Support HTML5 Audio But Actually Don’t Support HTML5 Audio
Some musings from Norman Walsh. I have to say, I’m still not entirely sure why the HTML/XML Task Force exists. The “use cases” described here are vague and handwavey.
All the tests and all the results, all in one place.
A nifty idea to help you people save on postage by clubbing together to make a single Amazon purchase.
Here's a little piece of web history: the proposal that was presented and rejected at the 2004 W3C workshop that led to the formation of the WHATWG.
Matt Ridley's new book sounds like a corker.
Mozilla, Opera and Google are collaborating on an open format for audio and video for the web (a wrapper for Vorbis for audio and VP8 for video).
Microsoft, Mozilla and Opera have formally submitted the WOFF font format to the W3C.
Bert Bos's 2000 Treatise (published in 2003) is a must-read for anyone involved in developing any kind of format. "This essay tries to make explicit what the developers in the various W3C working groups mean when they invoke words like efficiency, maintainability, accessibility, extensibility, learnability, simplicity, longevity, and other long words ending in -y."
An excellent write-up by Bruce of a talk he gave at the Betavine birthday party. Down with .mobi! One Web FTW!
This presentation by Steven Pemberton increases in value over time.
Christopher Schmitt shows how to style XFN links using attribute selectors.
Opera have unveiled the Web Standards Curriculum. It's released under a CC attribution non-commercial share-alike license and it looks like a very valuable resource.
David has no sense of humour.
PPK points out a potentially dangerous aspect to Opera's actions, one that that the rest of us have missed: "Without consulting anybody, Opera is trying to give a political body the right to decide what does and what does not constitute a web standard."
Ben Buchanan on how most supposedly open Web 2.0 (sic) sites are really walled gardens lacking interoperability.
As in beer.
The DOM support looks great.