IntenseDebate Plugins!

It’s an exciting day for all of us in the IntenseDebate community. Today we’re announcing IntenseDebate Plugins, turning IntenseDebate into a real commenting platform. We’re launching with 4 plugins we’ve written on our own to show the capabilities, and to check off some longtime requested features. Of the 4, I’ve been the most involved in the development of the Smileys plugin, which I’ve created all 19 smileys for.

The smileys are inspired by existing Smileys sets such as iChat, MSN, the bulletin forum boards smileys and Adium’s default ones, but are 100% made by me. I chose to create them in a 12x12px format instead of the usual 16x16px or larger, because this means they won’t break the line-heights on most sites as much. Pretty nifty if you ask me.

So go ahead! Show people what you’re capable of and write your own plugin today. Who knows, there’s a possibility you might get featured…

Web Browser Market Shares

I found this awesome site that compares market shares globally between browsers. As of 2008-10-01, these are the biggest browsers in the world:

46% – Microsoft Internet Explorer 7
25% – Microsoft Internet Explorer 6
19% – Mozilla Firefox, any version
7% – Safari, any version (most likely including other browsers built on WebKit, such as Camino)
3% – Other browsers (Google Chrome, Opera, Netscape, etc)

Notable is also that Safari versions below 3.0 are at less than 0,02% of total market share.

Click here to go to marketshare.hitslink.com to read more.

At least in my job, knowing what browser your customers use to browse the web is crucial. Yet, you hear many different numbers from many sources, and you end up just making up your own numbers that seem somewhat correct. Different sites can be browsed by completely different browser users. For websites aimed at very tech-savvy people (think digg.com) generally Firefox has a much larger market share, whereas a site like myspace.com probably has less Firefox users than even the overall average market share of the browser.

When making a web service, it’s very important to recognize your limitations – but also your possibilites. Modern browsers support features older browsers don’t, and if you know that 75% of your audience uses a modern browser (such as Internet Explorer 7+, Firefox 2+, Safari 2+), it’s sometimes acceptable to design a feature aimed at these people, and doing a light version for the others. For me as a designer, a classic example is PNG-24 images, semi-transparent wonders that makes IE6 totally crap out. Therefore I do a less pretty version of the semi-transparent images for that browser, and most people that actually cares are happy in the end.

It’s an interesting and forever evolving topic, that’s for sure.