Standards Policy

I actively promote and make use of published standards and recommendations by the W3C, ISO, IETF and other relevant standards bodies. All content I produce for this site conforms with all relevant guidelines, recommendations and standards.

Best Viewed With?

I choose to support the Any Browser campaign against the practice of designing a site to be best viewed with one or two particular user agents. Instead, this site is designed and built with standards to be accessible to all user agents, but with graceful degradation in mind. Thus, while it is possible to access this site with any user agent you choose, certain features may not function correctly; however, where applicable, accessible alternatives are provided.


Accessibility is a measure of the ability to access the content of a web site. I make an effort for all documents on this site to conform with all applicable accessibility guidelines such as the W3C’s Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 (WCAG 1.0) and the US government’s Section 508. As a result, this site is accessible to any user with any user agent running on any platform and on any internet-enabled device.

However, total accessibility does not mean that this site will render as intended in all user agents; but rather, that this site has been designed to degrade gracefully in older, less advanced and/or less standards compliant user agents without impeding on a user’s ability to read and understand the content.

Graceful Degradation

This site makes use of modern standardised techniques that are not supported by all user agents and, as such, will degrade gracefully. Graceful Degradation is the ability of a web site to remain accessible in older user agents that don't support newer technologies and features.

The most notable user agent that this site degrades in is Internet Explorer. IE is well known among the web development community to be the least standards compliant user agent available; and, in order to make a standards compliant site render as intended, it often requires an excessive number of CSS Filters (or CSS Hacks). To limit the number of hacks included within my stylesheet, and to promote the adoption of fully standards compliant coding, I have opted for noticeable, yet graceful, degradation of this site’s presentation without restricting accessibility.

As a result, until Microsoft agree to comply with the published standards and recommendations, this site will continue to degrade gracefully for IE users. However, I strongly recommend that users switch to a standards compliant user agent such as Firefox, Opera or Safari (for Mac users).

Proprietary Extensions

Because I choose to adhere to the published standards and recommendations, I refuse to use any proprietary extensions. The most notable proprietary extensions include several presentational elements such as blink and marquee; and various attributes for colours and sizes, etc.

More recently, however, Google's nofollow relationship, although it validates according to the HTML DTDs, is non-conformant with the definition of link relationships in the HTML 4.01 recommendation. As a result, I consider rel="nofollow" to be harmful, and I will not be actively using it on my site.

Experimental Features

Within my current stylesheet, there are several properties that will only work in Mozilla based user agents. These are designated by the -moz- prefix. Although these may appear to be proprietary extensions, the difference is that these properties are being standardised in current CSS 3 drafts.

I have chosen to accept that, until the W3C publishes them in a recommendation, the implementation, and thus the displayed result, of these properties may change in future upgrades to Mozilla. They are being used for experimental purposes only and their use does not affect the functionality or accessibility of this site in any user agent that does not support them.