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WebKit As Broken As Older IE Versions? 213

An anonymous reader writes "It's not everyday that we get to hear about the potential downsides of using WebKit, but that's just what has happened as Dave Methvin, president of the jQuery foundation and a member of the core programming team that builds the widely used Web programming tool, lamented in a blog post yesterday. While most are happy to cheer for IE's demise, perhaps having three main browser engines is still a good thing. For those that work in the space, does the story ring true? Are we perhaps swearing at the wrong browser when implementing 'workarounds' for Firefox or IE?"
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WebKit As Broken As Older IE Versions?

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  • by dickplaus ( 2461402 ) on Friday February 15, 2013 @12:12PM (#42911213)
    The point of using jQuery and other frameworks is you don't have to re-invent the wheel every damn time you want to do something. Yes, jQuery might be misused in many situations, but in alot of cases, it simplifies the coding so you're not rewriting what is already done.
  • by Volanin ( 935080 ) on Friday February 15, 2013 @12:24PM (#42911359)

    No, it is not just him. This corruption problem with Safari is a well known problem. It appears that this problem manifests strongly in the macbook retina. There are ongoing discussions about this in many forums, including apple's own: []

    As reported by many testers, these problems have NOT been fixed in the soon-to-be-released 10.8.3 update, and they are still present in the Webkit nightly. If you are not experiencing such problems, the most probable reason is that you're using a non-retina display.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 15, 2013 @12:57PM (#42911809)

    Peter Kasting said...

      I'm a Chromium developer. It's not clear from your blog post: are the majority of the bugs you're complaining about things that are still broken on the WebKit trunk? Or things that you have to hack around because of the number of out-of-date WebKit-based UAs? If the former, are there bugs on file at

    I ask this because we spend a lot of time fixing bugs in each release, and if there are major problems we're missing, then I'd like to ensure they get triaged and investigated properly. But the complaint you write here isn't really actionable, because it's short on details.

    And semi-answer from the article:

    Even when they have been fixed in the latest Chrome or Safari, older WebKit implementations like PhantomJS and UIWebView still don't have the fix. We've had to put back several of these as users reported problems with the beta

    IOW, "OMG, people use rare UAs with outdated engine versions while main branch gets them fixed, and it's totally the same as when we waited 5 years between IE6 and IE7 and 3 between IE7 and 8 to get at least partial support of web standards and some engine fixes!"

  • by PapayaSF ( 721268 ) on Friday February 15, 2013 @01:29PM (#42912277) Journal

    I have no problems at all with IE. I don't understand why people would "cheer for its demise".

    If you don't hate IE, then you haven't been building websites. For years, the standard process for me was to write perfectly valid HTML and CSS that would render the same way in every other browser, and then spend time screwing around with it until it looked correct in IE. It added 10%, easily, to the cost of every project, and I've read of others claiming 30% or more.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 15, 2013 @01:54PM (#42912683)

    That's a little dishonest. When IE6 was released in 2001 it was quite good. There was also virtually nothing else on the market as AOL let Netscape flounder for five years and the earliest viable releases of Mozilla were still two years away and Firefox another year after that. IE6 also did quite a bit to tighten up the standards compliance at that time, including fixing the box model. Everything leading up to that point was a huge mess of feature-ramming on the parts of both AOL/Netscape and Microsoft while the W3C slowly toddled along.

    What Microsoft did that was blatantly stupid was to stagnate IE for five years between 6 and 7, effectively halting the development towards better standards compliance. And while Netscape at least had the excuses of recent acquisitions and bad project management Microsoft did this quite intentionally by all-but-disbanding the IE team entirely.

    IE has come a long way since then. IE9 and especially IE10 are very usable browsers in terms of speed and compliance. They're not perfect, but nothing is. What we need above everything else is an accurate measure of compliance. The W3C HTML/CSS Test Suites are the perfect avenue for that, very narrow unit tests of specific rendering functionality. The problem is that it's not as pretty or fancy as some colorful ACID test.

  • by kawika ( 87069 ) on Friday February 15, 2013 @04:24PM (#42915085)

    I'm the author.

    So let ME get this straight: I get paid nothing for my work on jQuery, where we clean up behind all the major browsers so that people don't need to wait months or years for bugs to be fixed. We also report these bugs to the appropriate vendors with clear test cases; as you can imagine we get our share of crappy bug reports and don't want to do that to these guys. You would also like me to donate more time to become an expert at Webkit to the point where I can fix these bugs immediately on their side, despite the fact that several major well-funded companies (Google, Apple, BlackBerry, and now Opera) are paying people to (NOT) fix these bugs. Sorry, but one unpaid volunteer open-source job is enough for me.

    I would love for all the WebKit contributors to get together and say, "We'll show that guy! HAHA we fixed all your bugs so THERE!" There are rumors, however, that Opera is laying off 200 engineers and I seriously doubt they'll keep a large staff of people on fixing WebKit bugs. I've emailed Peter Kasting privately and think he is sincere in trying to get some of these fixed though.

Loose bits sink chips.