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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Can someone comment on this?
I always thought Safari was fully compliant, but websites were not and that caused the occasional problem.

I was having trouble with the York University website and they sent me this email:

Hello:

Safari on Mac OS X 10.4 (Tiger) is not fully compliant with w3c
standards (http://www.w3.org/). The non-compliance makes it
incompatible with Passport York. Please use an alternate browser
(such as Mozilla Firefox for Mac freely available for download
from Firefox - Rediscover the Web )
 

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Boilerplate lies to make you go away and not complain any further, either because they don't want to deal with you or they have decided to ignore those who don't want to accept their solution, which is use Firefox.

I found it amusing that they say Safari is not compliant with "Passport York" rather than "Microsoft Passport that we use at York" which works best with Internet Explorer on Windows, the world's least compliant browser.

However, Passport can and does work fine with Safari.

There really is no such thing as a W3C compliant browser, for many reasons, but your instincts are correct; the W3C concerns itself with the content, not the browsers themselves.

Did you run the York page through the W3C validator? I'm sure you will learn just how interested they are in complying with "standards" if you do.
 

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You should email them back and tell them they're full of sh!t and include this link:

We love to see you smile - The Web Standards Project

Safari is the first browser to pass the Web Standards Project ACID2 test for web standard compatibility. Then ask them politely to stop telling lies. Safari doesn't work with their crappy system because they chose to use a non-standards compliant, closed proprietary solution, rather than an open, standards compliant solution.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I found it amusing that they say Safari is not compliant with "Passport York" rather than "Microsoft Passport that we use at York" which works best with Internet Explorer on Windows, the world's least compliant browser.

However, Passport can and does work fine with Safari.

There really is no such thing as a W3C compliant browser, for many reasons, but your instincts are correct; the W3C concerns itself with the content, not the browsers themselves.

Did you run the York page through the W3C validator? I'm sure you will learn just how interested they are in complying with "standards" if you do.
So I take it "Passport York" is using "Microsoft Passport"? How sure are you about this?

I couldn't get Safari to work with York Passport - first I get an error message and then another message that the student is not registered.
The York support people eventually sent me another link to start with and going that route stragely enough worked fine.
So it may not be the "Passport" software that's the issue but the way one gets to it- weird.

Yes - I tried W3C validator on a few York pages - they actually came out better than most websites, validator found only around 30 to 40 errors on each page.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
You should email them back and tell them they're full of sh!t and include this link:

We love to see you smile - The Web Standards Project

Safari is the first browser to pass the Web Standards Project ACID2 test for web standard compatibility. Then ask them politely to stop telling lies. Safari doesn't work with their crappy system because they chose to use a non-standards compliant, closed proprietary solution, rather than an open, standards compliant solution.
Thanks - good link to send to York - but before I do............
Is this "web standards" project affiliated with W3C somehow or did someone just 'create' this?
On the net one never knows how legit anything is.
 

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Thanks - good link to send to York - but before I do............
Is this "web standards" project affiliated with W3C somehow or did someone just 'create' this?
On the net one never knows how legit anything is.
From WaSP's about page:
WaSP: Fighting for Standards
The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), along with other groups and standards bodies, has established technologies for creating and interpreting web-based content. These technologies, which we call “web standards,” are carefully designed to deliver the greatest benefits to the greatest number of web users while ensuring the long-term viability of any document published on the Web.
More info is available at the link if you're interested.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks -

So is Safari still the only browser that meets the Acid2 test?

I would have thought iCab is in there as well since they really push for standards - that browser even includes a smilie if the web page you are accessing is W3C compliant.
 
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The ACID and ACID2 tests are just small - but complicated to render - CSS rendering tests. There's a lot more to W3C compliance than rendering complicated CSS properly ...

That said NO browsers that I've ever heard of that are "fully" W3C compliant, at least not yet anyway, they all have their oddities.

There are any number of reasons why that site might not work in Safari (besides them not wanting to support it), in particular Safari has some strange DOM issues which I've run into lately (specifically with handling some types of form elements from javascript and other various assumptions Safari makes about form elements).
 

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The ACID and ACID2 tests are just small - but complicated to render - CSS rendering tests. There's a lot more to W3C compliance than rendering complicated CSS properly ...
True. But I suspect any browser that passes ACID2 is being built by developers who take standards seriously, so the assumption might be that they are more likely to adhere to other W3C standards better than a browser that fails ACID2 horribly (like IE). This is just an assumption, of course, and assumptions can be proven wrong.
 
G

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They make take some standards seriously yes ... but again I'll point out that CSS is a very small part of the W3C standards and I highly doubt that the OP's problem with the York Passport site has anything to do with CSS rendering ;) Also the ACID and ACID2 tests have little or nothing to do with real-world usage. Just because the browser can deal with those doesn't mean they handle all things CSS 100% correctly, it just means that they've done work to ensure that their renderinig engine can hanle those specific tests ok.

The examples I pointed out above with the DOM issues with form elements are a prime example of a W3C standard that has nothing to do with CSS or ACID tests and are much more relevant for daily browser usage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I highly doubt that the OP's problem with the York Passport site has anything to do with CSS rendering
Probably not.

The strange thing is - if I start at the main York homepage, go to "Current Students" and follow the links I get this problem, but if I start at the York/Current Student page and then follow links to get to York Passport, I don't.

So I assume Safari with York Passport is not the actual problem - it seems to be the way I get there.
 
G

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Probably not.

The strange thing is - if I start at the main York homepage, go to "Current Students" and follow the links I get this problem, but if I start at the York/Current Student page and then follow links to get to York Passport, I don't.

So I assume Safari with York Passport is not the actual problem - it seems to be the way I get there.
Sounds like programming errors to me. It's likely that the links are generated dynamically and on one page they are done correctly and other page they are not. I honestly think that this is related to the Safari DOM issues I pointed out earlier.

My GF is a prof at York and a recent mac convert :D and she has no problems with any of the services from york, but she's a die hard firefox user . . .
 

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By far the simplest answer is to use Safari (or try WebKit) and enable the Debug menu. Grab a copy of FireFox as well.

Whenever you find a site that balks with Safari go to:
Debug: Open page with: Firefox (or any other browser you have installed; they will all be listed).

... and you're done. Go back to Safari when you and Firefox are done with the site in question.

To enable the Debug menu in the Terminal, first Quit Safari and then use the command:
% defaults write com.apple.Safari IncludeDebugMenu 1

To disable, run the same command with "0" instead of "1".

Note: sometimes the "incompatibility" is hard coded into the website; they look for a certain browser string and shut you down if they don't get the result they want. The Debug menu also lets you change the User agent to fake another browser. You can choose from:
Mozilla 1.1 (eg: FireFox)
Netscape 7
Netscape 6.2.2
Netscape 4.7.9
Mac MS Internet Explorer 5.2.2
Windows Internet Explorer 6.0
Konqueror 3

If simply changing the User Agent and still surfing with Safari works, then they have deliberately blocked Safari to avoid supporting it, even though it works fine.

Webkit is Safari, sort of, but with changes that will (probably) end up in the next version of Safari already implemented. I find it to be a quick, responsive browser and not in the least buggy. You can download the nightly builds or take a lazier approach and download a newer version from time to time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
By far the simplest answer is to use Safari (or try WebKit) and enable the Debug menu. Grab a copy of FireFox as well.

Whenever you find a site that balks with Safari go to:
Debug: Open page with: Firefox (or any other browser you have installed; they will all be listed).

... and you're done. Go back to Safari when you and Firefox are done with the site in question.
I don't think you read the whole thread.

It's not that the site "balks with Safari", it's just when you got to a certain point where you needed to authenticate yourself, the site came back with a message that you didn't exist.
Then - going to that same authorization page but starting from a different point on the website, everything works fine.

I doubt if marquerading as Firefox would solve that problem.
 

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You are not "marquerading as Firefox" when you enable the Debug Menu and select : Debug: Open page with: Firefox; you are surfing with Firefox.

What will happen is Firefox will launch, it will go to the very page you are on with Safari, and you can carry on from there.

The "Safari: Debug: User Agent:" menu will make Safari masquerade as another browser, for testing purpose, but don't confuse it with the "Safari: Debug: Open page with ..." menu item, which is a one-click launch of an alternate browser that goes straight to the problem page you are viewing with Safari; you don't even have to cut and paste the url or choose a bookmark. You can then carry on in the alternate browser and quit it when you are done.

It's very handy and takes a few seconds, if that, so it's totally non-intrusive with your workflow.

If Firefox isn't the ideal candidate, every browser you have installed on your system will show up there and you can choose any one you like. It will still launch the alternate browser you choose and open at the same page you were on with Safari with no more input from you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The "Safari: Debug: User Agent:" menu will make Safari masquerade as another browser, for testing purpose, but don't confuse it with the "Safari: Debug: Open page with ..." menu item, which is a one-click launch of an alternate browser that goes straight to the problem page you are viewing with Safari
That's exactly what I did, sorry.

Never even knew the other option was there - good to remember.
 
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