When did browser compatability become unimportant?

LEGEND ,
Oct 10, 2018 Oct 10, 2018

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This is just a general question, and a just out of interest one.

4-5 years ago many people objected strenuously against the use of flexbox, (don't be shy in saying why ) although at that time 94% of users had a device or browser that supported its use. The main reason given was that IE8/9 did not support it and some browsers devices required prefixes. (easy to implement) Fallback pollyfils did exist at the time, and css auto-prefixers.

The same also applies to css such as transforms and many more specs.

Fast forward to 2018 and css grids are being actively supported by many, including as an alternative, (easy) system to Muse users, even though less than 80% of browsers and devices support its use, ('can i use', does not show older devices that are still in popular use, so I have deducted a few %).

I would not call css grids "easy to learn", and so far I have not seen a visual method of its use that I could recommend to anyone.

What I am wondering is, if it is just those requiring a more visual, (but very limited in my experiance) methods of both css layouts and other css features, (such as animations) that are now leaving the old 'its not compatible with xyz' way of thinking, or are others, (e.g. Coders) thinking the same way, or starting to?

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LEGEND ,
Oct 10, 2018 Oct 10, 2018

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There seems to be some positive push towards using grid recently but I'm holding off until its a bit more widely supported. I dont get that feeling yet. A lot of developers on youtube are using it in tutorials but to use it in production is a little forward I think at the moment.

webflow are pushing their visual css grid system at the moment I got an email from them today.

Build CSS grid layouts visually | Webflow

I think grid will be much like flexbox - you pick the parts you unsderstand and which you feel makes building a layout simpler than what it is/was.

I dunno about muse users, thems kind of people don't understand anything about development, they generally rely on some bit of kit producing the work for them regardless. If its available those suckers will use it.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 10, 2018 Oct 10, 2018

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osgood_  wrote

I dunno about muse users, thems kind of people don't understand anything about development, they generally rely on some bit of kit producing the work for them regardless. If its available those suckers will use it.

What I am wondering though, given all the hype about css grids and visual tools for creating css grid layouts, that those requiring a visual aproach to css layouts, (and animations using Animate and googles css designer). Is if none/semi coders are actually starting to forget the old fears and compatability issues that was and maybe still is prevalent among many coders, and is it a good thing, (I think it may be)?

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LEGEND ,
Oct 10, 2018 Oct 10, 2018

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pziecina  wrote

What I am wondering though, given all the hype about css grids and visual tools for creating css grid layouts, that those requiring a visual aproach to css layouts, (and animations using Animate and googles css designer). Is if none/semi coders are actually starting to forget the old fears and compatability issues that was and maybe still is prevalent among many coders, and is it a good thing, (I think it may be)?

I don't even think it crosses their mind - as I said if its available to them in an automated workflow it must be good to go - those kinds of developers are brain dead in terms of thinking about anything beyond clicking buttons and dragging bits of text around the screen. In that respect its amazing what these programs can do for someone who is so oblivious to what they are producing. Does any professional really use Webflow or are these programs aimed at a certain kind of person who has the necessity to put together a couple of websites a year, maybe manage the website for their annual village hall tea party, the retired having a bit of fun at the clients expense, etc - I think they can be excused but for anyone trying to tell me they are using them in a professional capacity thats just a joke.

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Guest
May 21, 2019 May 21, 2019

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I'm working in a marketing agency (we do branding, webdesign, online / offline marketing and content creation) in Switzerland and we are building Websites for our clients with Webflow. The main two reasons being that our clients need a CMS that is powerful and easy to use and we want to design costumes made websites and not just fill out WP templates. We also can't code websites by hand because our clients don't have the budget for that (usually they have like 10'000$ for a website). Obviously there are limitations to tools like Webflow but for our use cases (landing pages, marketing sites, business sites, blogs and some shops) it's perfect.

So yeah, in my opinion there is definitely a place for Webflow in the professional world. I recommend you check it out, it's really fun to work with.

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LEGEND ,
May 21, 2019 May 21, 2019

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I have already checked out Webflow, some time ago. Ùnfortunately l find these kinds of options too slow but thats on account lve always worked directly with code and have become very efficient......so its a case of what you dont know you dont miss for those that use such workflows.

I think they all have their place and can be useful to somebody, somewhere, at some time but l cant say l have seen any big swing in the professional dev world to Webflow.

Marketing companies are usually producing a bit of this and a bit of that and are not fully development centric so l can imagine it might be an option in those circumstances.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 21, 2019 May 21, 2019

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The Swiss Web Factory (Andre Bender) uses a more professional tool: https://www.swf.ch/referenzen/index.php

Wappler, the only real Dreamweaver alternative.

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LEGEND ,
May 21, 2019 May 21, 2019

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Dont kid yourself, neither tool would be considered professional by a professional. That guy knows his html/css code, a lot isnt Wappler. He probably nèeds backend help.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 21, 2019 May 21, 2019

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https://forums.adobe.com/people/kevin+loeffer  wrote

We also can't code websites by hand because our clients don't have the budget for that (usually they have like 10'000$ for a website).

You can't code a site for $10,000?  I must really be in the wrong profession then.

we are building Websites for our clients with Webflow. The main two reasons being that our clients need a CMS that is powerful and easy to use and we want to design custom made websites and not just fill out WP templates.

So your clients must buy in to the whole Webflow ecosystem for their web design, hosting & CMS.   That's what I call putting all your eggs in 1 basket.  What happens if your clients don't want to use webflow? 

Nancy O'Shea, Adobe Product User & Community Professional
Alt-Web Design & Publishing ~ Web : Print : Graphics : Media

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LEGEND ,
May 21, 2019 May 21, 2019

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If only l could get 10000 dollars or 10000 swiss francs for building a website. Im just wondering what kind of a professional set up would charge that kind of money and then come up with a Webflow solution.

Of course we dont know the extent of what the website needs to do but if its purely Webflow driven it cant be that involved.

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Guest
May 22, 2019 May 22, 2019

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Example website pricing on an hourly basis (160CHF per hour)

Research, market analysis and competitors: 4h = 640.-

Strategy: 2h = 320.-

Sitemap, wireframes: 4h = 640.-

Prototyping: 10h = 1600.-

Design Revisions: 3h = 480.-

Development: 25h = 4000.-

Dev Revisions: 3h = 480.-

QA: 2h = 320.-

Going Live: 1h = 160.-

Reserves ≈ 10%

Profit ≈ 10%

You see, as an agency 10k is not that unreasonable for a website. Of course these are Swiss prices, in other parts of the world it may very well vary.

To your point that Webflow sites are not on a professional level: I suggest you have a look around at there showcase: Popular Websites | Webflow You can build really cool shit with Webflow.

Finally I understand that older, more experienced developers may dislike these new tools, because they think it diminishes their hard learned craft. And I think this argument can definitely be made... but like I said I really fell in love with Webflow and I can only recommend that people who are maybe a bit sceptic check it out for themselves.

Have a beautiful day : )

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LEGEND ,
May 22, 2019 May 22, 2019

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https://forums.adobe.com/people/kevin+loeffer  wrote

Example website pricing on an hourly basis (160CHF per hour)

Research, market analysis and competitors: 4h = 640.-

Strategy: 2h = 320.-

Sitemap, wireframes: 4h = 640.-

Prototyping: 10h = 1600.-

Design Revisions: 3h = 480.-

Development: 25h = 4000.-

Dev Revisions: 3h = 480.-

QA: 2h = 320.-

Going Live: 1h = 160.-

Reserves ≈ 10%

Profit ≈ 10%

You see, as an agency 10k is not that unreasonable for a website. Of course these are Swiss prices, in other parts of the world it may very well vary.

To your point that Webflow sites are not on a professional level: I suggest you have a look around at there showcase: Popular Websites | Webflow You can build really cool **** with Webflow.

Finally I understand that older, more experienced developers may dislike these new tools, because they think it diminishes their hard learned craft. And I think this argument can definitely be made... but like I said I really fell in love with Webflow and I can only recommend that people who are maybe a bit sceptic check it out for themselves.

Have a beautiful day : )

A least it gets some hits on 'stack overflow' which is more than can be said for some options and if you're happy offering it as a solution continue to do so. I expect there are 'experts' in it, like Wordpress or Magento or any other workflow you care to mention, who focus on one dimension. Dont expect me to regard it as a 'professional' approach though. The problem with web-development these days is any old Tom, Dick, and Harry can call themselves 'professional' and come up with a solution using one of these automated tools/frameworks until they are faced with producing something bespoke which cant be achieved by just a click and drag approach or searching for a plug-in.

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LEGEND ,
May 22, 2019 May 22, 2019

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I really thought this discussion was dead.

In light of what I have read, I think I will go for my afternoon siesta, after all, I have already had my morning coffee and my lunch in the restaurant by the stream. Retirement is the answer to all problems about the state of web design and development.

Just thought I would reply, (it is my discussion) .

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LEGEND ,
May 22, 2019 May 22, 2019

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pziecina  wrote

I really thought this discussion was dead.

In light of what I have read, I think I will go for my afternoon siesta, after all, I have already had my morning coffee and my lunch in the restaurant by the stream. Retirement is the answer to all problems about the state of web design and development.

Just thought I would reply, (it is my discussion) .

Couldn't agree more. I'll fight on until the end but I realize it's dumb and fruitless but at least I have a clear conscience of not having sold my soul to the devil.

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Guest
May 22, 2019 May 22, 2019

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Obviously we offer alternatives to Webflow depending on the needs of the client, but our "default" tool is usually Webflow.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 10, 2018 Oct 10, 2018

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Ask yourself this:  is Webflow (the latest DIY visual design app to offer Grids) going to add fallbacks for older browsers automatically or are they just wowing users with the latest web design trend?   "Oooo oooo look at us, wer'e so progressive 'cuz  we've got Grids now!"

I stopped worrying about IE8 some time ago.  But I still care about IE10 and older mobile device users.  So I'm not using Grids in any big way yet.  Flexbox and floats are doing what I need for now.

Nancy O'Shea, Adobe Product User & Community Professional
Alt-Web Design & Publishing ~ Web : Print : Graphics : Media

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LEGEND ,
Oct 10, 2018 Oct 10, 2018

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https://forums.adobe.com/people/Nancy+OShea  wrote

Ask yourself this:  is Webflow (the latest DIY visual design app to offer Grids) going to add fallbacks for older browsers automatically or are they just wowing users with the latest web design trend?   "Oooo oooo look at us, wer'e so progressive 'cuz  we've got Grids now!"

That's what worrys me Nancy. I do see the good side of the visual apps promoting css grids, as it brings more awareness to the possibilities of css. But I think like yourself and Os, that it is too soon to use, especially by those not knowing what they are doing. Don't get me wrong though, the more people who stop concentrating on old browser compatability, the better, (even if it is by those unaware of what they are doing )

Most of the visual tools start, (or sometimes end) tutorials on css grids with the creation of a designers grid, and for those unaware of the difference, (like designers who refuse to at least learn what they are doing code wise) I can see many problems arising from not knowing. I have also yet to see any tutorial regarding css grids that goes into the topic of 'flowing' one grid layout into another, (e.g. desktop to mobile) or even mentioning media-queries.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 10, 2018 Oct 10, 2018

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pziecina  wrote

Most of the visual tools start, (or sometimes end) tutorials on css grids with the creation of a designers grid, and for those unaware of the difference, (like designers who refuse to at least learn what they are doing code wise) I can see many problems arising from not knowing. I have also yet to see any tutorial regarding css grids that goes into the topic of 'flowing' one grid layout into another, (e.g. desktop to mobile) or even mentioning media-queries.

At the moment I'm completely ignorant to grid because I've totally forgotten what I learned about it months back, maybe even last year and that's the problem. You stuff your mind too early then instantly forget everything if you dont use it in your everyday workflow.  It wont be that difficult to get back up to speed with the parts that I think can be of use to me (I've got a whole folder full of tests and layouts) but I'll go through the learning process again when I think the time is right and for me its not just yet. I had the same issue with flexbox, learned it too early and couldnt really do anything with it in production so had to learn most of it again at a later stage. Now I use it nearly everyday in my workflow so I don't forget.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 10, 2018 Oct 10, 2018

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Grids are not that difficult to use or learn, but only if one already has a good understanding of flexbox. The problem at the moment in its use, is that for many devices fallback is a must. Creating a layout with css grids that falls back to flexbox, (and still looks the same) is for me a waste of time.

I can see the point in using css shapes in a media-query, (or via a @support rule) but when it comes to layout I would like to think anyone selling their services or a site knows what they are doing, and not as Nancy says, 'just following the latest web trend'. If a css feature does not work as intended, it is normally no big deal in most cases, but if a layout falls apart, nothing works.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 10, 2018 Oct 10, 2018

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True.  I doubt that visual designers fully  test their work in every device & browser.  I think more often than not, they just assume the software takes care of everything for them until someone complains that it's broken in brand X. 

Nancy O'Shea, Adobe Product User & Community Professional
Alt-Web Design & Publishing ~ Web : Print : Graphics : Media

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 10, 2018 Oct 10, 2018

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I still think that browser compatibility should be factored in when developing our website. I have also noticed that those using Chrome and Firefox have their browsers automatically updated and Microsoft is actively pushing Edge for Windows users. There should be no issues on this level. Mobile devices are usually single column and do not require Grid/Flex functionality when mobile-first-design is used.

Of greater concern is older versions of Windows that only support IE. These could degrade gracefully to a mobile layout when Grid or Flex is not recognised.

Overall, I think that Grid has enough support for generally use.

Having said that, my initial enthusiasm for Grid soon gave way to a more common sense approach to layouts. If we look at the following layout

what should we use Grid for? With the knowledge that Grid is two-dimensional and layout-in while Flex is one-dimensional and content-out (see Relationship of grid layout to other layout methods - CSS: Cascading Style Sheets | MDN ​), which method should we use for the above layout?

Using Flex:

  • the navbar: single dimension, spacing of items using Flex (content-out)
  • the content: side bars can be created left to right (single-dimension) using Flex
  • the footer: columns in a single dimension using Flex.
  • push the footer to the bottom of the page using Flex - top to bottom, single dimension.

Using Grid:

  • create template-areas for navbar, content and footer and push footer to bottom using Grid.
  • the navbar items still need to be spaced using Grid/Flex
  • the footer columns still need to be spaced using Grid/Flex.

IMHO: for simple layouts use Flex, for more complex layouts (see the article), use Grid even when within a Flex container.

Wappler, the only real Dreamweaver alternative.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 11, 2018 Oct 11, 2018

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Thanks for the reply Ben,

The problem with mobile devices is mainly with tablet devices, for which a single column simply does not work. There are so many Android tablet devices out there now that unlike desktop and smartphone, both of which can use larger and single column layouts respectivly.

The tablet device problem is not new, and is what caused problems with the original flexbox specs for anyone using it. My major concern though is the way css grids is being 'sold' as a simple layout method by many of the visual editors now, without any mention of the way it must be coded in order to 're-flow' from a layout on one viewport size to a larger/smaller viewport size, with no mention of compatability problems, media-queries or fallback.

An experianced coder knows what they must do in order to present a layout that re-flows, and what fallback is required. None of the problems with grid layouts are being mentioned by any of the visual editor tutorials, and are often glossed over by the tutorials aimed at coders.

I suppose one could say, "ignorance is bliss" when it comes to the none coder promoting css grids, but anyone selling their services as a professional web developer, or offering to build websites for money, should know better, and be aware of the limitations of css grid layouts.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 11, 2018 Oct 11, 2018

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pziecina  wrote

I suppose one could say, "ignorance is bliss" when it comes to the none coder promoting css grids, but anyone selling their services as a professional web developer, or offering to build websites for money, should know better, and be aware of the limitations of css grid layouts.

What are these limitations. When I was exploring/testing grid it seemed to work ok for me using media queries to restructure the layout. I'm not sure it was any quicker or easier than just using Flexbox to be honest but then again I wasn't exploring the full extent of grid, just re-working some current layouts built in the conventional way, into a grid workflow.

I get what Ben is saying about 'simple layouts' - there is no need to use grid for what has become the conventional way to layout a website. However I suspect this conventional way, once css grid is adopted by more devlopers, will eventually be superceeded by grid.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 11, 2018 Oct 11, 2018

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The limitations are simply that unlike flexbox which can 'wrap' depending on the viewport size, and adjust the flex child element size to fit, grid layouts must be told how to do so.

css grids can automatically wrap and adjust sizes, but they require one to think of not just how it should look when doing so, but to be told how they must do so.

The way css grids is being 'sold' to many, and especially by visual editors, is as a designer grid creation tool with no mention of any additional code to go from say an 8column grid to a 1column grid, (and everything inbetween). We all know that smartphones can use a single column in both portrait and landscape, which on tablet devices does not work. A single column in portrait is o/k, but a single column in landscape mode, (which most users prefer) does not work.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 11, 2018 Oct 11, 2018

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pziecina  wrote

The limitations are simply that unlike flexbox which can 'wrap' depending on the viewport size, and adjust the flex child element size to fit, grid layouts must be told how to do so.

Ok well I guess that suits my workflow because I'm telling Flex what it should do at different break points as I feel I have more control over the layout, so using grid will come naturally to me once/if I have the chance to deploy it at some stage in the future.

What I find crap about Flex is if you use something like justify-content: space between; it positions elements at the extreme ends of the container, even if you only have 2 items, for instance in a gallery set up, which have space to sit next to each other, that just looks plain stupid.

pziecina  wrote

The way css grids is being 'sold' to many, and especially by visual editors, is as a designer grid creation tool with no mention of any additional code to go from say an 8column grid to a 1column grid,

I think in the case of Webflow that's automated from what I could see from the examples shown or you could shift the layout around to accomodate different devices. I havent used one of these visual tools as when I'm watching the videos it all seems extremely tedious to me just to get something simple executed and you can never be sure what is being created under the hood.

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