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The Challenges Faced In Responsive Web Design

The best solution that was adopted for our website “ugly christmas sweaters” to optimize it for mobile devices is responsive web design. However in the creation of web design that is structure responsive, the challenge that is frequently faced is cross-browser compatibility which means compatibility across different browsers. The web designer must ensure that web design will work properly and it will be functional in any platform.

Solving the weak points of responsive web design

One of the weak points of responsive web design is image management which is also linked to cross-browser compatibility issues. Photos and media need to be flexible in order to adapt to different devices and for loading problems to be minimized. For example, a large high resolution image is not an advisable solution because it will slow down page loading and it will probably display only a quarter of its original size. Another problem is media queries do not always work well with old browsers and consequently, responsive web design that applies CSS3 will only be viewed by those with modern browsers with strong CSS3 support. However, web designers have their solutions through JavaScript that can serve responsive web design to older browsers without CSS3 support.

• Respond.js – enables an old browser to understand and execute CSS3 media queries. This web script seems to be an ideal solution but its purpose is solely to make old browsers read CSS3 instruction on media queries.
• Modernizr – is a small JavaScript library that detects the availability of features that are already implemented in at least one major browser. Modernzr is an indispensible tool for web designers because will detect features that are natively implemented or not. The web designer is able to write conditional JavaScript and CSS to handle the situation whether it supports a feature or not.
• adapt.960.js – the concept of this web script is similar to CSS3 media queries but it does not make use of CSS3

Which of the three solutions should be applied? If you choose to apply respond.js, you will need to write and manage a single CSS file but if you prefer adapt.960.js you will require several CSS files. If you choose Modernizr, you can take advantage of the new CSS3 capabilities of new browsers that support them with a reliable way of controlling them in old browsers without the capability.

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