RSS readers are a great invention; they let you keep up with news and blogs without needing to surf the web all the time to find out what’s new. I have quite a variety of feeds in mine and I follow personal blogs as well as technical ones, on a range of different subjects. Of course sometimes it happens that the same news hits me twice – especially when it was posted on a popular website first.
Yesterday afternoon however, it seemed there was no other news in the world than the fact that Safari is now available for Windows! As a web developer who still hasn’t bought any flavour of Mac, of course I jumped to the opportunity and immediately downloaded Safari 3 for Windows. Installation went really fast and painless, and before I could decide on where to surf first in this brand new browser, the apple.com homepage was there. Looked perfect too.
But then I looked up my own site.
And some other sites I built…
To see why my enthousiasm was gone instantly, take a look at these screenshots of my site on any contemporary browser (I call it Firefox 😉 ) vs the same site on Safari for Windows:
locusoptimus.com on Firefox
locusoptimus.com on Safari on Windows
Comparing various sites in both browsers shows that on some sites, Safari won’t display headings, anything between <em> or <i> or <strong> or even simple <span> tags, or certain list elements.
Thinking it was just me (comparing notes with John confirmed not everybody has these problems), I figured I must have b0rked my installation of XP or something, especially since I already encountered visibility problems in a game before, that also works on other people’s computers without fault. I nearly decided to do a complete re-install of XP today! Thanks to the fact that *everybody* seems to be blogging about the new Safari, I found this page today, where the consensus seems to be that this new Safari is really US-only, and just fails to work properly with any other OS than the US versions of Windows. Something to do with the UTF-8 encoding, which is indeed what I use on any new site I build. No idea what the encoding could possibly have to do with displaying headings in a browser, but it seems to be crucial here.
On one hand a relief that it isn’t just me, and even better, that I won’t need to do another reinstall of XP, but on the other hand a great disappointment, that even though Apple managed to get Safari out for Windows, I won’t be able to reap the benefit 🙁