Smart ID Cards and a bit of a rant

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Like many other Hong Kongers, it's time for me to exchange my Hong Kong ID card for the new Smart ID card, with built in chip containing some biometric information.

Like many others in Hong Kong, I went to the Official Smart ID Site to book an appointment. Unlike the BWG, however, I had no problems with the website, even though I used Mozilla on Linux.

Many HK websites are designed by dribbling idiots who have no experience with anything outside their cozy little Windows world. They design websites for the latest version of IE on the latest version of Windows and they never, ever check their site on anything else. They deliberately code using completely proprietary extensions which only work on Windows, or code effects which rely on IE's quirks to render properly. What's worse is, if you dare challenge their design work, they immediately go into a very defensive rant: "how dare you criticise me! I code for Windows and IE because only homosexual, communist freaks use anything else!" Etc, etc. You get the idea. Classic examples are the,, or websites which only work on IE.

A counter example is the online banking site which works very well under Mozilla on Linux, Solaris, whatever. And why shouldn't it? It's a website. There are standard protocols for designing them. There is no need whatsoever to code for one browser over another. It's arrogance, plain and simple.

My approach is to get it right with Mozilla (which is more standards compliant) and then make sure it looks about right in IE, which most people still use. Occasionally, I'll fire up Opera just to see what the heck it looks like, or I use Konqueror, but if it looks right in Mozilla and IE, the chances are pretty good it's fine in everything.

Except, of course for Netscape 4.7. That doesn't handle stylesheets correctly and is generally pretty broken. If you're using it right now and these pages look bad, it's your browser.


William said:

Totally agree with you on the narrow visions held by techs in HKG. Try the website of Bank of China. It is pathetic given the fact that they are the largest bank in China. I guess money can't buy everything. Three years from your original post, one2free still didn't get it. Idiots.

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This page contains a single entry by dave published on November 17, 2003 10:36 PM.

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