Upgrade paths

After I jotted down some quick thoughts last week on the disastrous way that Google Chrome rolled out a breaking change, others have posted more measured and incisive takes:

In fairness to Google, the Chrome team is receiving the brunt of the criticism because they were the first movers. Mozilla and Apple are on baord with making the same breaking change, but Google is taking the lead on this.

As I said in my piece, my issue was less to do with whether confirm(), prompt(), and alert() should be deprecated but more to do with how it was done, and the woeful lack of communication.

Thinking about it some more, I realised that what bothered me was the lack of an upgrade path. Considering that dialog is nowhere near ready for use, it seems awfully cart-before-horse-putting to first remove a feature and then figure out a replacement.

I was chatting to Amber recently and realised that there was a very different example of a feature being deprecated in web browsers…

We were talking about the KeyboardEvent.keycode property. Did you get the memo that it’s deprecated?

But fear not! You can use the KeyboardEvent.code property instead. It’s much nicer to use too. You don’t need to look up a table of numbers to figure out how to refer to a specific key on the keyboard—you use its actual value instead.

So the way that change was communicated was:

Hey, you really shouldn’t use the keycode property. Here’s a better alternative.

But with the more recently change, the communication was more like:

Hey, you really shouldn’t use confirm(), prompt(), or alert(). So go fuck yourself.

Have you published a response to this? :


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# Shared by Comandeer on Monday, August 16th, 2021 at 3:45pm

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Previously on this day

8 years ago I wrote August in America, day thirteen

San Diego, California.

10 years ago I wrote Re-tabulate

Combining responsive design with CSS table layout to rearrange the display of content and navigation.

10 years ago I wrote Re-flex

Putting content first by combining responsive design with the CSS3 flexible box layout module.

14 years ago I wrote Wireframework

Frameworks have their place… but that place probably isn’t on the Web.

15 years ago I wrote API changes

Heads up. Flickr and Del.icio.us have made some changes.

16 years ago I wrote Joe Clark in the flesh

Ryan Carson, one of the minds behind BD4D, has started putting on some pretty darn excellent one-day workshops in London. He’s already had Eric Meyer over for CSS training. Next week, Cal Henderson will be talking about the building of Flickr.

16 years ago I wrote Blogging from Word

In April 2004, Tim Bray wrote:

17 years ago I wrote A gaggle of geeks

This weekend, Brighton was the setting for Geekend 2: Electric Boogaloo.

18 years ago I wrote Swimming

Swimming is just like riding a bike: life-threateningly dangerous but good exercise.

19 years ago I wrote Betrayal

Take a look at the photo in this PR story from the White House.