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Press Release Supporting the
Web Standards Project Browser Upgrade Initiative

IMAGE: bug on HTML tags

February 16, 2001: Wise-Women, an independently produced not-for profit site with a focus on the education and encouragement of women web developers and designers, announced its full support for the Web Standards Project (WaSP) Browser Upgrade Initiative today.

"We regard this as an important initiative. We wanted to encourage our members, most of whom are involved or interested in web development in some form, to help to solve the problem of what are arguably the biggest hurdles for web developers: browser bugs and poor support for W3C standards." said Dori Smith, publisher and founder of the Wise-Women web site and mailing list, and WaSP steering committee member. "Our goal is not to promote the browser from one company over the other: however, now that there's a choice of several browsers that do support most of the standards, it's time." she added.

"Our site is optimized for the latest, standards-compliant browsers. We try to avoid non-valid markup as much as possible. Our site is somewhere in between going all-out by relying on CSS only for representation, and using lots of heavy handed backwards-compatible workarounds. There's not a <font> tag to be seen in our markup, nor a JavaScript error message." noted Makiko Itoh, producer of the Wise-Women web site, who added that there is an information page available to see how this was acheived. The page is located at http://www.wise-women.org/about/how.

"A significant portion of our web site readers are not that experienced in web development. We felt that this was a good opportunity to educate our readers about this issue, as well as show them a living example of how it can be possible to built a site that "works" without bending over backwards to deal with browser bugs" said Bonnie Bucqeroux, editor of the Wise-Women web site.

In order to make the point in a gentle manner, starting today all pages on the Wise-Women web site will include a small reminder to upgrade their browsers. The message will only appear in version 4.x and earlier graphical, JavaScript capable browsers.

Originally conceived as a companion site for a thriving mailing list, Wise-Women has grown rapidly from an average of 3,000 hits per day to more than 35,000 per day since its launch in August 2000.




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