Monday, March 12, 2007

Being a good web citizen

Ten years ago I had a long email conversation with someone who was blind. He had bought one of my books and was using one of the example programs to write a better screen scraper for web sites than the one he was currently using. This made me realize how important it is to test our web sites so that everyone has access to them. I periodically use the text only web browser Lynx to test my sites. BTW, if you are in a hurry looking for real information on the web, you might try Lynx: sometimes plain text is better and faster, if sites are well designed: keyboard-only web browsing :-)

Spend a little time getting used to Lynx, and you may like it as a fast alternative for web browsing.

Ideally, XHTML or HTML is used for web content, with visual styles added with CSS. Javascript should be optional. It is very cool that using good web writing style also helps make sites more accessible for people with impaired vision. By the way, note that Blogger.com does a very good job of generating HTML that is easily viewed and navigated with a text only browser like Lynx. Try visiting this blog using Lynx.

No comments: