A client just emailed me:
> Thanks 🙂 … life was a lot easier with a beige box with IE installed!
I had to laugh a little. It’s easy to look at how complicated things have become nowadays and look back to when things were easier/better in the past. Probably around the same time that America used to be “great”, and everyone was happy, fit and well.
But it doesn’t always hold up to closer inspection, does it? Here is how I replied:
Hehe, you’ve got your rose-tinted nostalgia glasses on and you’re forgetting back around 2000 when IE 2.0 and 4.0 and 6.0 were all being used in similar numbers at the same time, and they had wildly different capabilities, plus there was Netscape 6, Firefox and Konqueror, and Opera … and by 2008 things had become really, really messy, with about a dozen major browser/OS combinations to worry about. It wasn’t until about 2012 that issues with differences in rendering more or less went away and CSS libraries like bootstrap started doing the heavy lifting. But that’s also the time when the current proliferation of screen sizes happened. Something nasty happens about every 5-6 years to make life as a developer difficult. I don’t know what is next (maybe strict enforcement of Content Security Policy rules, making it very hard to mix and match external resources?), but I do suspect that we’re about due for another big headache.
There’s a great graph here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_web_browsers
Maybe I’m being a Grinch, and things really were better back then, but I still prefer living in the now than the past. We’re working with some great clients, on some really interesting projects, and I think that the coming year is going to be the most exciting yet for the company. We have a new Artificial Intelligence / Agents project getting off the ground, and another one which got as far as a smart prototype earlier this year being picked up for some serious investment. We’re meeting with a new major client tomorrow, Hull City Council. Things have never looked so good!