A variety of browsers starts with us

Original author: L. Jeffrey Zeldman
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Developers, designers and analytics, there is something that you can do for the health of the network: test all your sites in Firefox.

Yes, we should design as much as possible according to the standards. Yes, we need to test our work in * all * browsers and on all devices on which we can. Yes, yes, of course.

But now, when Chromium, de facto, will be the only network engine, the existence of Firefox is critical.

Even if you love Chrome, adore Gmail and literally live in Google Docs and Analytics, no company, let alone following the users of the advertising giant, should not control the Internet.

The development and implementation of accessible standards occurs when the balance of corporate forces supports organizations like W3C and cross-browser testing on various devices is part of any project.

When only one rendering engine remains, well, many of us remember how the development of the web stopped for almost ten years, when developers tested only in IE6, and some for the same period, when Netscape was the only significant browser.

Do not think that the need to test on phones can save us: most of them also use Chromium.

And do not write off the desktop simply because many people love mobile phones more.

When one company decides which ideas are worth supporting, which problems of accessibility are important and which are not, it suppresses innovation, spreads competition and opens the door to digital segregation, allows you to easily remove certain groups of people from the web.

So how to deal with it? Us weak, us poor? Double the effort we put into cross-browser testing. Laying it into the requirements of each project, large and small. Ensure that our colleagues, employers and customers understand what we are testing and why.

Perhaps we can fight without fail showing colleagues and clients our work in Firefox instead of Chrome. Just as a reminder that there are other browsers and some of them may set Chrome to heat. (And as a bonus, you can use excellent development tools built into Firefox.)

Diversity is good for the web and for society. And it starts with us.

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