Fog Creek Software
Discussion Board




Compelling reason to use XHTML/CSS

Douglas Bowman did a redesign on microsoft.com and reduced the file size by 62% which saves an estimated 329 *TERA* bytes bandwidth per year.

An interesting look at a real world example, but I'm sure we'll hear from a few standardistas and validatorians in due course.

http://www.stopdesign.com/articles/throwing_tables/

Interaction Architect
Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Who cares.  This is akin to someone saying that if all cars on the planet got 40 mpg we'd save x gajillion barrels of oil. 

Everyone going XHTML/CSS is no more likely than all cars getting 40 mpg.

Besides it makes the telco money and they employ people and those people buy things, so on and so forth.  There is no open source bandwidth.

Mike
Wednesday, July 28, 2004

I don't think he was aiming for everyone to go the CSS route for the greater good - quite the opposite.  He was simply pointing out that in a high-bandwidth case like www.microsoft.com, shaving off better than 50% of the size of the home page goes a *long* way towards bandwidth costs.

Greg Hurlman
Wednesday, July 28, 2004

It funny how you can spot a site designed in this manner in a glance.

Where can we see his example?

Gary van der Merwe
Thursday, July 29, 2004

Mike,

on Telco employees making money on excessive bandwidth use:
Do you think the national economy gets stronger if we also flush our toilets twice every time?
Then we could start a campaign, "Flush out the recession"! That would be cool!

Of course there is no Open Source bandwith, but since bandwith is a resource you pay for according to usage, and since the bandwith you use is unavailable to everyone else, an Open Source analogy is way off.

This is basically about cutting costs.

Martin A. Bøgelund
Thursday, July 29, 2004

People who access the web on a dialup connection would care quite a lot about seeing the exact same site in less than half the time.

Also, with a table layout the content doesn't get rendered until the closing table tag is received - it gives the impression to the user that the site is taking forever to download or the browser has hung. Tableless XHTML/CSS sites don't suffer from this.

It's all about enhancing the user experience and snappy, responsive feedback to actions is highly desirable.

Interaction Architect
Thursday, July 29, 2004

"Do you think the national economy gets stronger if we also flush our toilets twice every time?
Then we could start a campaign, "Flush out the recession"! That would be cool!"

I've seen some "Flush the Johns" bumperstickers lately.


Seriously though, I build all of my apps using XHTML.  As mentioned above, I was able to cut my filesize by 25-50% across the board on one of my apps.  It was pda-based on a GPRS wireless connection (approx 56kbps), so it was useful.


But I also use XHTML because I know at some point, making a screenscraper for a few of my apps  is probably going to be needed and basing it on the dom/sax model is much easier than regexp.

KC
Thursday, July 29, 2004

Greg: "He was simply pointing out that in a high-bandwidth case like www.microsoft.com, shaving off better than 50% of the size of the home page goes a *long* way towards bandwidth costs."

If you read the article he actually says the ms homepage (as it is) isn't really that heavy - there's still a lot of bandwidth to remove.

Walter Rumsby
Thursday, July 29, 2004

If i have a hammer, then everything looks like a nail.

or...

If I have a [web designer], everything looks like [XHTML]. 

The guy who wrote this obviously doesn't realize that microsoft.com (far from being a very important page - who goes there?) is probably generated by some content management system. 

When the CMS uses XHTML, i'm sure it'll magically make the rest of microsoft.com look that way too.

Doug
Thursday, July 29, 2004

*  Recent Topics

*  Fog Creek Home