Read only mode for older web browsers


(Aaron) #1

I was giving some thought to your browser requirements. While this kind of technology is certainly a leap forward, I worry about how many users I would lose to the browser requirements.

Disclaimer: I don’t have a bunch of old browsers to test on so I don’t know how well this works on non-supported browsers.

Most large communities get a large segment of their overall traffic from search engines (non-registered users). This search traffic is extremely important for those of us that are running communities as businesses. Since most of this search traffic does not convert to registered users, I had the idea that a “read only” mode would be beneficial. This mode would be only for users that are not logged in and would not require many of the javascript features. Ideally this read only or “simple mode” would have lesser browser requirements.

Any thoughts?


(Patrick Westerhoff) #2

I think @codinghorror wrote somewhere (don’t remember where) that Discourse is in active development for five years, i.e. that it’s not supposed to be super ready before. So the current high browser requirements will be actually rather low requirements then.


(AstonJ) #3

I think there definitely has to be some kind of graceful fall-back for older browsers, not just for reading either.

Many people access forums from work, and many businesses are stuck with old browsers. It would be nice if we could only cater to the most up-to-date, but unfortunately that’s not an option for most forums.


(AstonJ) #4

I wouldn’t have thought that is right @poke, 5 years is a long time.


(Brad Westness) #5

The team has discussed elsewhere that they’re planning a simplified theme for mobile users. Maybe that could be served to older browsers as well? Kinda like Twitter does to people on IE 6.


(Jeff Atwood) #6

Just as an example, 1.3 beta does not currently work at all on IE9 (I am surprised @DeanMarkTaylor has not notified us) and probably has not for a few months… and nobody, literally nobody has complained.

Of course there is a warning on the page for old browsers, here’s what IE8 sees:

I know @riking did some work on a read-only fallback mode for old browsers versus the warning we show…


(Dean Taylor) #7

I’m currently running on v1.3.0.beta7 +17 (875a013ec76e7ce0cbb95a61223cbbd16ed31d4a) which works fine in IE9.
So that’s ~15 days ago updated May 7th.

Currently waiting (read: monitoring meta anxiously) for the number of Ember switch over / regression bugs to be reduced. The impact so many little issues popping up on the communities I handle is a little to hard for me to deal with when combined with my current work load.

I think I’ve still managed to report more than 5 bugs in that time though.


(Jeff Atwood) #8

Of course, wasn’t insinuating you aren’t doing a good job.

But consider: all of our hosted customers, of which there are over a hundred, many running sizable communities, are on a very recent 1.3 beta – and none of them have mentioned to us a problem with IE9. Even though I verified yesterday that loading meta produces a blank white page in IE9.

That implies, to me, that IE9 just isn’t used much, if at all, any more. At least not for the customers we serve.


(Dean Taylor) #9

I can confirm that IE9 is unfortunately still used communities I’m involved with (sadly), I make a serious effort push people towards Google Chrome when issues arise.

I can also confirm IE9 is currently broken on latest, console errors are as follows for meta currently:

SCRIPT1002: Syntax error
application-e2323d96bb9cecb7f536a35ec59653d3.js?v=1&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fmeta.discourse.org, line 19 character 1
SCRIPT5007: Unable to get value of the property 'currentProp': object is null or undefined
meta.discourse.org, line 410 character 3
SCRIPT5007: Unable to get value of the property 'extend': object is null or undefined
meta.discourse.org, line 435 character 2