Mailbag Q & A II Answers

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A few weeks back I asked that users submit questions for another mailbag post. I got some good questions so here we go.

When will you drop IE6 support?

This is a topic that's been buzzing around the internet quite a bit. I wont drop IE6 support until its market share is below 5% which will take at least another year. I think that the idea that all web developers should drop support at once so people upgrade is ludicrous. People aren't consciously choosing to stick with IE6 -- they simply don't know better. Some people don't care about the internet as much as us and we, as developers, have no right make things more difficult on them to make our jobs easier.

What are you thoughts on jQuery 1.3 and the future of MooTools and other JavaScript frameworks in the coming year?

2009 will be a huge year for JS frameworks, Moo and jQuery specifically. I think they'll both see huge growth because more developers will strive to learn both frameworks. I also know that the MooTools project will improve in a number of ways beside just the robust framework code but I can't talk about it...yet. I've got a secret: MooTools is NOT dead.

How much time does it take to write a MooTools plugin?

A lot less time than you think. Testing generally takes more time than writing the code. Obviously the complexity of a plugin dictates how long it takes to write but if you made me put a time on the average plugin, I'd say 30 minutes to an hour. Some have taken 5 minutes and some have taken 3-4 hours of tweaking.

I know you pay a lot of attention to the MooTools project. How much attention do you pay to jQuery.

I bet more than you think. I follow @jquery and Lead Evangelist Rey Bango. It's important to know what's going on in jQuery because their moves may effect MooTools' moves and visa versa. I also get great inspiration from plugins hyped on @jquery. Remember, you shouldn't be choosing one framework over another -- you should learn one and then pick up the other.

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  1. I got a tweet from Eric Meyer just a bit ago that said, there were still a million people using IE5.01. Depending on your site and how important these types of users are to you, I don’t think many of us can get rid of IE6 any time soon.

    Like you have pointed out, not everyone is a tech person. Many people don’t keep her machine up to date. Let alone care what browser they are using.

    Fortunately IE gives us a way to provide IE specific content and there are JS scripts that help old versions of IE to become more compatible.

  2. cssProdigy

    Great mailbag. I completely agree with what you said about IE6 but if we as designers and developers don’t drop support or provide a way for users to upgrade, people will still be using IE6.

  3. Dmitry-Sh

    I’ve dropped the support for IE 6.0 already, as it was done by Apple.
    Is it time to do away with IE6 programming?

  4. Drop IE6? Depends on the site.

    Typically if the content of the page for visitors is straightforward and “brochure”-like, I’ll support it.

    For a more complex site that is more of an application than a brochure I charge a lot of extra to support IE6 (if possible)–or at least give the IE6 visitor something to do at the site, albeit very different from the real one.

    But for the admin side of a website I don’t support it anymore–ever (and usually just ignore IE 7 as well).

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