This blog is not about having the right operating system or the right browser to make sure that sites look and function correctly, but rather about the actual computer. Even 5-7 years ago, as long as you had an average or even older computer, 99% of the time any site would load without a problem, provided you had the right software installed. This has definitely changed in recent times to a point where you may need a top of the line computer just to view some sites’ content. For example, we have an older (Pentium 4) computer with an integrated video card in the office for testing purposes and there would be no way that we could use it to watch high definition videos because it just simply can’t handle them. It’s just too slow and all videos end up being very choppy and sometimes unwatchable. The same goes with websites that have very nice flash presentations or extensive java script. That’s not to say that those sites are poorly made.
The point here is that a lot of times they are designed with only the latest hardware in mind. So why not have two versions of the site? Google is doing it with gmail where you can switch to html-only if the regular interface is too slow – something that’s very useful if you are browsing the web on an older computer or on a less powerful tablet (for example: Nokia N810 – which is what I have). That’s not to say that the entire site has to be redone in a slow-computer-friendly way, but definitely some of the elements. As an example, the tag cloud to the left of this blog is done in flash, but it will automatically switch to simple html if flash is not supported on your browser.
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