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From Christopher Bentley <>
Subject GUI Design: Cold sweat
Date Sun, 26 May 2002 04:42:49 GMT
I have reviewed the archives and some of your existing HTML and CSS and 
I am concerned on your behalf by some of the discussions and decisions 
being made about the design of the HTML and CSS....

The most urgent question in my mind is
1. Why are you developing HTML and CSS in Quirks Mode?

- Do you plan to continue this into production?
- If your are intending to switch Strict Mode on then which DTD will 
your output be written against?

If this is actually unresolved then it is very important you do.. your 
CSS is already poised to break all versions of Netscape (it's written 
against the IE Box model not the W3C Box model)

If you have no Idea what I'm taking about you can read about it here;

2. What is your commitment to the Accessibility requirement?
	"Special care should be taken to support the WAI guidelines."

- On a scale of 1 to 10 what is your commitment to WAI?
- What is ASF policy on Section 508 compliance if any?

It is worth noting an Accessibility issue has already been posted to 
this list see: Ivelin Ivanov: - Re: draft howto dtd.

3. There has been some general mention of gaining access ASF server 
stats in the list.

Will whoever has the power to get them please get them as a matter of 
urgency, UI design decisions are already being made on assumptions and 
subjective opinions - some of them possibly out of scope of requirements.

If possible the following analysis of logs would be helpful for your UI 
team in forming a User profile;

Based on averages of a month in the last 3 months;
	Top 10 Browser Vendors
	Top 10 Browsers
	Browsers listed by User Agent
	Top  10 Operating systems
	Breakdown of error messages.
	Top 10 entry pages
	Top 10 exit pages

obviously Hits, Page Views, Length of Sessions and Traffic would be 
quite interesting.

Based on the last complete week;
	Top 10 Browser Vendors
	Top 10 Browsers
	Browsers listed by User Agent
	Top  10 Operating systems

if ASF uses some kind of site metrics tool to collect the following, 
  	breakdown of screen sizes used
	breakdown of Javascript used and versions
	breakdown of plug-ins used.
would be interesting also.

It would be a valid assumption that Netscape 4 and Linux use is scewed 
in your User community - The UI team  need to know the reality of at 
least of that. Netscape 4 is going to be (is) a spoke in decisions to be 
made on support issues across a range of UI technologies and design 

There is a trueism that I try to keep in the back of my mind.. "ASSUME 
makes an ASS out of U and ME"

I have seen (not recent) stats that show Netscape 4 use;
	In SME markets as low a 3%
	in general population as high as 13%
but commonly between 4-8%.

It is also worth mentioning that Mozilla 1.0 will be released in a few 
weeks and hopefully Netscape may commence heavily marketing Netscape 7 
soon and drop support for version 4 at last. - This may relevant given 
your release schedule <

*While on the subject of site metrics tools, it may be worth considering 
adding one as a requirement to your 'Dream List". Having good site 
metrics will be a valuable aid to those involved in maintenance and 
future re-design phases.

I have more if you want but I think these will likely naturally flow 
from a Quirks Mode (see 1.) thread.

Chris Bentley

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