nick barker
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DISCUSSION

Re: Re: Re: (x6) Request to Safari users


I sure did - and it is still buzzing
As I said, it was not my intention but as soon as I read Sylvan's first post I thought that it was probably going to heat up a bit.

I always forget how upset people can get about "art" - I don't know why I forget because I hear it often enough.

Anyway - glad you both reported the "bug" .

I know one cannot expect technology to stand still but I just do not feel quite ready for "Please view this site with any other browser than Safari"

t.whid wrote:

>
> y Nick, you really stirred up a hornets nest over there. and i guess
> i'm one of the hornets ;-)

DISCUSSION

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Request to Safari users


All I really wanted was to get anyone who might prefer Safari to support animated background gifs to mention it to Apple
but anyway - things are really hotting up over at
http://discussions.info.apple.com/
Discussions > Safari > Request to Safari users

http://discussions.info.apple.com/webx?14@@.5997ffdf/11

Here is the latest

Timothy Whidden RE(7): RE: Request to Safari users
(msg # 2.1.1.2.1.1.1.1: Posted Jul 27, 03 8:39 am)
Posts: 7
quicksilver 867
Mac OS X (10.2.x)
1. drop your ignorant definitions of web art. it's extremely insulting and makes you sound like an idiot.

2. i'm not being disengenious or misleading. there is nothing in HTML that would allow you to have [object] tags render in the background, but come to think of it, why not have java, quicktime movies, flash, or text as the background of the page? you could do some interesting things.

3. i support following standards. i repeat, if images are allowed to be in the background of an HTML doc by W3C standards then it's simply proper practice to support the format completely.

4. why is the background considered not part of the content of the page? lots of the newest CSS techniques use background images to place graphic headings on pages (see this:http://www.stopdesign.com/articles/css/replace-text/). so the distinction is clearly becoming murky as far as web designers are concerned.

5. Would you support not allowing background PNGs to have their alpha-transparency feature?

6. my answer to your real question: I *need* to display a graphic format that the browser claims to support. Don't get me wrong. Safari rocks the house, I use it everyday and I'm using it right now. I want it to be better and animated GIFs make it better for me.

7. Your directive to use different formats doesn't help the thousands of pages already built with this one effect in mind. Sure, web artists understand that their work may be ephemeral, that it can degrade or become lost as technology changes, but in this instance it would be so easy for Apple to fix this one little thing and let some web art live for a bit longer in the Safari browser.

Sylvan RE(8): RE: Request to Safari users
(msg # 2.1.1.2.1.1.1.1.1: Posted Jul 27, 03 9:45 am)


DISCUSSION

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Request to Safari users


> >If your aim is to use HTML to create "art", then you need to accept
> the
> >browser's capabilities and work within them. That's part of the
> challenge,
> >and those constraints lead to interesting solutions.
>
> hm.. guess there are more interesting constraints to choose from
>
> browsers should d-fault 2 follow standards
>
> next allow user to change/hook in whatever
>
>
> lo_y

Here are a few more comments generated by this topic at
http://discussions.info.apple.com/
Discussions > Safari > Request to Safari users

Sylvan RE(4): RE: Request to Safari users
(msg # 2.1.1.2.1: Posted Jul 26, 03 8:14 pm)
Posts: 72

browsers should d-fault 2 follow standards

OMG! Teh psot is s0 r1ght!!!!

Safari does follow W3C standards. Its CSS implementation isn't perfect, and it has some Javascript bugs, but I think for a 1.0 release it's great.

This is the best site for tracking Safari's standards compliance:
http://diveintomark.org/safari/

I'm not aware of a standard that mandates animating gifs while in the background. That's quite possibly a user-interface design decision. Animated backgrounds can make content harder to read and result in a confusing and frustrating browser experience. Along with BLINK, pop-up windows, etc. it's one of those things that 99.9% of the time doesn't add to the user's enjoyment of the web. Apple also isn't interested in cluttering the preferences window with unnecessary settings. For a best-case experience, animated backgrounds can be safely excluded.

Now if only they'd disable any Javascript that resizes the root window.

guess there are more interesting constraints to choose from

That's the thing about constraints. We generally don't get to choose them.

You could always try putting your animated gifs in the body of the document, and placing content on top on layered or CSS repositioned blocks.

Timothy Whidden RE(5): RE: Request to Safari users
(msg # 2.1.1.2.1.1: Posted Jul 26, 03 9:28 pm)
Posts: 6

the question is this:

Does Safari support the GIF format or not?

If it does then it shouldn't matter how the GIF is being displayed in the browser, whether through an tag, a background attribute on another tag or using the background-image property in CSS.

If I make an animated GIF and Safari claims to support the format then I would like my GIF displayed the way I created it.

Safari is well on it's way to being the default browser on OSX and it's important to support the most popular animated image format on the Web completely, not partially.

Sylvan RE(6): RE: Request to Safari users
(msg # 2.1.1.2.1.1.1: Posted Jul 26, 03 9:50 pm)
Posts: 72

Does Safari support the GIF format or not?

Disingenuous and misleading.

Safari supports Java. But you can't have a Java applet in the background of a page.

Safari supports Quicktime movies. But you can't have Quicktime movies in the background of a page.

Safari supports HTML text. But you can't have HTML as the background of an HTML document.

The W3C specification allows for the use of image files to place a background behind a document. Nothing about that specification mandates that all features of an image format need to be honored.

Safari animates GIF images, streaming JPEGs, Flash animations, etc. when they are part of the content of a page.

It's a designer's job to make effective use of the toolbox available to them. "Web art" is not about using the web to communicate information to a user: it's about abusing the browser to whatever extent possible to create some nifty effects.

If you have an image that needs to be animated for a user to view it, then it can be presented as part of the content of a page.

Forcing backgrounds to be static, if that was Apple's intent, results in a better reading/browsing experience when loading those obnoxious, amateurish pages that throw in poor graphics, midi music, badly colored fonts, etc. on top of animated starfields or marching teddybears.

No, the REAL question is, what do you need to display to the user? Safari displays the vast majority of web pages I've ever visited perfectly. If you need to present the user with graphics, or text, or multimedia, Safari does that just fine. If you feel you absolutely have to present the user with a content layer over an animated layer, then bare HTML simply isn't the best tool for the job. Use a Flash animation or similar.

"But I don't want to" is your choice. Your choice shouldn't dictate how Apple develops their browser.

DISCUSSION

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Request to Safari users


I agree - so what is the standard re animating background images?

> browsers should d-fault 2 follow standards

> next allow user to change/hook in whatever

lo_y

>If your aim is to use HTML to create "art", then you need to accept the
>browser's capabilities and work within them. That's part of the challenge,
>and those constraints lead to interesting solutions.

Sylvan

DISCUSSION

Re: Re: Re: Re: Request to Safari users


Timothy Whidden RE(3): RE: Request to Safari users
(msg # 2.1.1.1: Posted Jul 26, 03 5:14 pm)

Posts: 5
wow. this post is offensive to artists on so many levels. love the "quotes" as if "web art" isn't "art" at all.

from my quick search it doesn't seem like the W3C has anything to say about it.

But if we disable the feature in background GIFs, why not in *all* GIFS? why not disable animation all together? I find lots of animation annoying. Because animation is subjectively more *annoying* is not a reason to not support it, it's an excuse.

But there is a good reason to support animated background GIFS: Animation is part of the GIF format. Safari should support the format, not selectively support it. I *HATE* the fact that MSIE on windows selectively supports PNG (will display it but without the alpha transparency). How is Safari's selective support of the GIF format any different?

If the majority of people find it annoying than the Apple can turn it off by default and allow users to enable it.

> Sylvan
> RE(2): RE: Request to Safari users
> (msg # 2.1.1: Posted Jul 26, 03 2:06 pm)
> Posts: 54
> Part of the whole "web art" thing is figuring out how to use a
> browser's capabilities to accomplish a certain end.
> If all you want is a large animated graphic, a streaming movie or
> Flash animation is a more effective way of doing that.
> If your aim is to use HTML to create "art", then you need to accept
> the browser's capabilities and work within them. That's part of the
> challenge, and those constraints lead to interesting solutions.
>
> Safari is built to be a good web browser; not an artistic canvas.
> Animated backgrounds do not enhance the readability or utility value
> for most users; just like <blink>, it's mostly an annoyance. I think
> Apple are making the right decision in disabling such a feature