After suffering for far too long with poor ADSL performance, I finally ditched my TalkTalk ADSL service and replaced it with cable from Virgin Media. A couple of years ago I was getting 8Mb on my ADSL line. In recent times I’ve been struggling to hit 2Mb. The breaking point came when one of my former colleagues sent me a picture of his speedtest.net result showing a 30Mb service on a day when I was struggling to get connected.
I went for the cheapest service Virgin Media offer. I’m paying for 10Mb and I’m actually getting 10Mb (who’da thunk it). I figured that things have been so slow recently, 10Mb would feel rapid and sure enough it does. No doubt in a few weeks I’ll be bitching about it and want to upgrade… :)
The change over left me with one little issue. My Virgin router is down stairs, but my wired network is upstairs. That problem was solved today when a man in a van dropped off a present from Amazon in the form off a Buffalo Wireless-N Nfiniti™ Dual Band Ethernet Converter. I plugged that into my switch upstairs and Bob’s your uncle, I now have a bridged network.
The MacBook Pro and iPad have once again been relegated to scrapyard side of my desk and I’m back to using my main desktop. Aaahhhh Linux…
In a thread on the OakTable mailing list, James Morle pointed out that Oracle’s Web Conferencing software was IE only. A point that has been mentioned by Jake from The AppsLab a number of times in relation to his need for a Windows VM on his Mac. The discussion turned to the relative browser share and multi-browser support. This post is a minor rearrangement of my posts to that thread.
Before I launch into the body of the post, keep in mind I am talking about complex (typically GUI style) apps with a specific purpose that run from within a browser, not just general web pages!
The breakdown of browser stats from my website over the last month was.
Which is pretty similar to those figures quoted in the summary on Wikipedia.
That surprised me because in the past I’ve always found my stats for IE much lower than the general stats quoted. I’ve always assumed this was because Oracle geeks try out alternative browsers much more than the general public. Most “normal” people I know use IE. Most geeks I know don’t. Now they seem to match. Does this mean more regular folk are moving to Firefox & Chrome, or is this all being skewed by browsers on mobile devices?
The stats for mobile devices are shown here, but I am not sure if these get included in the general stats also. If so, I would expect some of the Chrome hits to be coming from Android devices and some of the Safari hits to be coming from iPhone and iPad devices. If that is the case, then using the general browser market share stats may not be too clever when deciding the impact of whether to support a specific browser for your app. Maybe OS usage is a better option.
Looking at the OS usage stats on Wikipedia, Windows is still kicking butt on the desktop, so all these people have access to IE as well as their preferred browser.
Compare that to my site, where Linux is the distant second biggest OS.
For a browser-based app you expect to be run from the desktop, forcing people to use (or have access to) IE is not that much to ask. The vast majority can, if pushed, switch to IE for that specific task.
I don’t think you can lump mobile and non-mobile into one pot. Mobile apps have so many constraints to consider that they will invariably be treated as a separate project that must *definitely* be multi-browser compliant or a native app.
Browser-based apps that are intended for desktop users are different because about 90% of the time (according to the stats) they will be used on a Windows PC, having access to IE.
Obviously, your intention should always be to build apps that are multi-browser compliant, but depending on the nature and purpose of the specific app, having to open IE to run it will have zero impact on the vast majority of users (both home and business) until Windows loses its desktop dominance or the desktop ceases to exist…
Going back to the app that started this thread, Oracle’s Web Conferencing, is it a problem that this is IE only? Well it’s a pain for me because I’m a Mac and Linux user, but it’s not insurmountable because I can use a VM. I’ve never needed or wanted to use this functionality from a mobile device, so the IE constraint hasn’t affected me in that respect. In this case it’s very much a business app, so the vast majority of users will be sitting at a Windows PC. With that in mind, this is one of those cases where the IE constraint is annoying, but acceptable.
Followers of the blog will know I’ve had a little bit of trouble with Oracle Norway and money disappearing from my company credit card.
This is just a quick note to say the issue has now been resolved and all the money is safely back in my account. Thank you to everyone who got involved in resolving the process. Your help is much appreciated.
I’ve said numerous times I’m not a fan of Facebook, but in true “jumping on the bandwagon” style I’ve created an ORACLE-BASE.com Facebook Page. Big thanks for Jake from AppsLab for his post about the WPBook pluggin. It certainly saved me some time looking around.
Now all I need is 25 likes and I can get a proper URL for the page…
Update: I have my 25 likes now, but feel free to continue adding them if you want to.
We just had a power cut and whilst looking for a torch I hit my head against the corner of a wall.
I couldn’t find a working torch anywhere, then I remembered my Android phone has a Flashlight app. No more bruises…
Wow. It’s only 6 months since Christchurch was battered by the last quake (here). Same feelings all over again. Waiting to hear if the family I know down there got through it OK.
Good luck down there.
I was very dismayed when I read this yesterday.
A number of news services have done the rounds since, including this today on Slashdot.
I think it’s all a bit depressing really. So we have another 3-4 years to wait for the final spec to be sorted. Then of course we have to wait for the spec to be implemented (badly) by all the necessary browsers. Of course they are already supporting various bits of it, but their implementations will no doubt change along the way and cause untold numbers of apps to break with them. Then we have to wait for everyone to upgrade their browsers. So what is the real date that HTML5 is go? 2020?
All of a sudden native apps seem kinda appealing and Flash doesn’t seem quite as evil as it used to be.
My main desktop machine has been playing up a bit recently. When powered down it was sometimes forgetting the date and time settings. I figured it was the CMOS battery, but I couldn’t be bothered to open the case and change it. Anyway, after redoing the CMOS settings far to many times I finally opened it up to see what kind of battery it took. To my delight it was a “CR2032″, which rang a bell as I had bought one recently to put into some kitchen scales. A quick trip down stairs and I “found” a new battery, popped it in and Robert’s your Father’s Brother.
I would just like to point out that I still believe this event was a sign that I should waste money on some new hardware…
Followers of the blog will know I’ve had a little trouble with Oracle Norway randomly taking money off me for no reason.
Today I got the money refunded, but there was a snag. I was refunded less than the amount that was taken. I’m guessing this has something to do with exchange rates etc. So as it stands I am about £40 out of pocket, which is significantly better than the several thousand pounds I was before.
As you can image, I sent an email off this morning asking for the missing money. Let’s see how quickly that is dealt with.