Archive for the 'browsers' Category

ar.atwola, mapquest, and Firefox Adblock extension

Monday, July 31st, 2006

I was reading an email from a friend the other day telling me where she and her family had gone on vacation (Rehoboth Beach, Delaware). I wasn’t sure where Rehoboth Beach was, so I opened up a browser and went to mapquest.com.

The mapquest link showed up in my Firefox address field but nothing appeared in the main browser window. I tried a refresh, and still nothing appeared. I looked at the status window and saw that the browser was trying to load a link from some domain called ar.atwola.com… Which didn’t sound as if it was related to mapquest.com. I was starting to wonder if my browser had been hijacked. But I tried going to a few other sites (CNN, BBC, etc.) and they came up fine.

So I did a google on ar.atwola and found that it is a adserver run by AOL Time Warner. It seems that mapquest has some ad’s on their homepage that are served by the Time Warner server… And it appeared that the Time Warner server was having a bad hair day.

I still wanted to use Mapquest to see where Rehoboth Beach was so I thought about how I could get around the problem with the ar.atwola.com site.

And I remembered reading about the Firefox Adblock extension. I use Firefox as my main browser anyway so I found and installed the Adblock extension. I went back to the mapquest site and it still hung on me but I then used Adblock to identify and block all the ar.atwola.com links on the page. I then refreshed and, voila, mapquest worked and I figured out where Rehoboth Beach is (south side of the mouth of Delaware Bay).

My compliments to the folks working on the Adblock Project http://adblock.mozdev.org/index.html

What browsers do you test against?

Monday, January 23rd, 2006

We test newly developed websites using the latest version of Microsoft Internet Explorer (currently 6.x) for Windows, Mozilla Firefox 1.x for Windows and Macintosh OS X, and Apple Safari for Macintosh OS X. We no longer test against Internet Explorer for Macintosh OS X since Microsoft is no longer developing IE for the Mac. We also validate our XHTML and CSS code using the W3C organization validation tools.

This does mean that newly developed sites may not work well with older browser versions. But almost all of the major browsers (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Netscape, Safari) can be upgraded to the latest version for free. In fact, if you are properly keeping up with your Windows XP or Windows 2000 OS updates, you are automatically being updated to the latest and greatest Internet Explorer.