I’m a web developer, write websites and web applications.
As a web developer, certain things that I produce are subject to various accessibility laws. I make a note of pointing out that not all of what I produce is subject to those laws since not everything I write is publicly accessible, and the brief of a particular project might be exclusive of such things.
Anyway, this legislation is often quite vague: ‘we’re not sure what we want, but if you don’t do what we want, we’ll take you to the cleaners…’ or something to that effect.
So, as a developer — and as a developer who tries to keep at the pointy end of technology — I try to act in such a way as to anticipate the whimsy and capricious thinking of the legislators and cover as many options as is practical.
With this in mind, I invested in a number of books discussing proper, valid use of Cascading Style Sheets [CSS] and valid Hypertext Markup Language [HTML].
All was good. I’ve since developed some nice, standards-compliant and wholly accessible web applications .. but wait!
There’s a fly in this otherwise, soothing ointment. A fly by the name of Microsoft. Yes, the Beast of Redmond has decided that their browser, Internet Explorer, isn’t going to support the standards properly and break just about every damn thing you put in front of it; much like a petulant 3-year old with his most expensive toys from unwanted relatives, arms folded and pet lip inclusive.
This is particularly annoying — thus, the title of this discourse — because how the hell am I meant to produce standards-compliant and wholly accessible web applications when the company responsible for the market-leading browser has no intentions of producing an up-to-date version of their software?