- Hawaiian Airlines
- Amazon's MP3 Download Site
- Facebook (Email app)
- Musician's Friend Checkout site
- Authorize.NET's Admin interface
- American Express Bill Payment
- Yahoo - certain news stories of the portal home page
And here are a few more non-high visibility ones (all today):
- Maui Weather Today
- Nova Savings Bank
- Bank of Hawaii
I usually am curious as to what the nature of errors are and it seems there are two kinds of prominent errors:
- Load Errors
- DOM Elements are null
Ironically most of the bogus code when I've looked at it has something to do with effects and fancy graphics arrangements in the page - shadows, popups, effects. Do we really need to have shadow code update after typing every character at the cost of a constant barrage of errors that page designers hope the browser will just eat and skip over?
But this really begs the question: Are site designers not even bothering testing at least in the two most popular browsers?
Most errors trigger in IE specifically which seems to indicate that more designers are targeting Mozilla, and starting to simply ignore IE's fucked up standard support. Maybe this is what it takes to get Microsoft to clean up IE once and for all. It used to be the other way around in that Microsoft was counting on site designers who wanted to make sure that 98% of the browsers out there work with their sites and other browsers be damned. Now it seems the tide is actually going the other way with more sites failing with IE and working with more standards compliant browsers, regardless of the fact that Microsoft still holds well over 80% of the browser share. Ironic, ain't it?
I's pretty frustrating to see so much bad Web code out there so prominently displayed for general consumption. To be fair though all of the errors I've run into are non-fatal errors. If ignored, pages continue to run apparently unencumbered. I guess that almost makes it more frustrating: what a lame piece of code it must be, if it isn't even missed if it doesn't fire? <g>
I'm railing in futility against this phenomenon because I happen to run frequently with IE and script debugging enabled. IE maddingly pops up a modal debugger dialog on every error:
If I abort the error the page usually continues to load and even work Ok despite the error, but some errors (like the one on Facebook's email message editor) apparently triggers on repeating events like a keypress or hover or mouseclick and I end up stuck on the page and have to kill IE. A modal dialog for the error is a killer in this scenario.
But, hey maybe those fancy Web Designers skip that step - they don't test for IE right? <g>
The errors I've been seeing though are hardly specific to IE though - some also show up in FireFox although FireFox in combination with FireBug certainly makes it much nicer to review the errors with an icon in the browser's statusbar and a quick access list to jump to the errors or at the very least be aware of the errors on the page.
FireBug however doesn't let you stop on an error and step into the code at the error (even as an option) either which on occasion is useful.
In the end I use FireBug for most of my debugging, IE for IE specific debugging and some heavy debugging scenarios where I need to step through lots of code - it's a lot of back and forth and I wish I could stick to one environment but it seems that's just not possible given browser DOM differences.
Plain old HTML apps may have been clanky and conservative but they just worked. Now there's a lot of crap being introduced that adds little value, except try to feed our deficit attention spans and in the process make our lives more difficult. I'm all for fancier user interfaces and making applications more interactive and easy on the eyes, but when it comes to usability my first interest is that the application works! Everything else is secondary by a long shot.
So, is this sort of thing happening to you as well frequently? Are you running with debugging features off or are you too suffering through dialogs and error displays on common Web pages?
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