Do you remember the incompatibilities of Internet Explorer with the standards for the Web? Until a few years ago, those who were called upon to develop Web applications had to engage in delicate balancing acts to guarantee the compatibility with all the browser available on the market. And despite the efforts made, there was always some program for surfing online that behaved differently than the others. Fortunately, thanks to the work of World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and more dialogue among browser developers, things have improved.
What is the Interop 2024 project, to make browsers interoperable
Microsoft, Apple, Mozilla, Google have jointly announced the continuation of their mutual collaboration to make modern browsers even better and offer a consistent user experience across all platforms. The goal is to achieve a stable configuration in which each technology, and therefore each web application, works the same in each browser. Regardless of whether you use Edge, Safari, Firefox, or Chrome, all websites should offer the same experience and functionality.
The alliance took shape in 2021 under the name of Compat 2021. In 2022, web browser makers have launched Interop 2022 precisely with the intention of optimizing thebrowser interoperability identifying critical points for developers. Together, Microsoft, Apple, Mozilla, Google and other companies have implemented numerous improvements to the Web platform and now they are ready to continue with theirs joint venture.
This year the project Interop 2024 focuses on several areas, such as layout, CSS architecture, HTML elements, and more. Microsoft claims that Compat and Interop have significantly reduced the number of inconsistencies in browsers when using them flexbox and grills, but some differences still exist. Therefore, the participants of Interop 2024 decided to do some layout Web one of their main areas of focus this year.
Check your browser’s score
Participants in the Interop 2024 initiative also agreed on a system of shared score which allows you to evaluate how much each single version of each web browser is interoperable and in line with the behavior of competing products.
The graph reproduced below highlights how – within a year – all browsers have passed the tests for each individual functionality (green line).
The Interop 2024 Dashboard reassumes it behavior of each browser and highlights areas where progress still needs to be made. Percentage values that reach 100% or are close to it suggest a high degree of interoperability and maximum adherence to Web standards.
You can also notice that the current stable versions of web browsers are much less interoperable than pre-release ones (button Experimental): this is due to the fact that the developers are gradually implementing optimizations in the preview versions, which will themselves become stable within a few months.
CSS Font Enhancements: new typographic standard for the Web
The management of font size it is an essential component to ensure easy and uniform reading. The implementation of
font-size-adjust combined with the value
from font allows designers to achieve a visual coherence between multiple character families. This feature ensures that characters fit harmoniously within the specified reference height. A significant step forward in creating homogeneous and pleasant typographic layouts. It is a good approach to avoid CLS phenomena penalized by Google as part of the Web Vitals program.
WebSocket Security: Security and convenience for two-way communications
The management of WebSocket connections posed a real challenge, requiring the use of non-HTTP(S) schemes. Browsers open to the use of standard HTTP(S) URLs, greatly simplifying the implementation process.
IndexedDB Evolution: client-side data storage
Is called IndexedDB that powerful API that facilitates client-side data storage. Present in browsers since 2011, in the context of Interop 2024 it takes on crucial importance in order to guarantee full interoperability between versions 2 and 3. The collaboration within the Interop project will contribute to consolidating implementations and ensuring uniformity in the use of this fundamental resource for storage client-side.
Advances in CSS Grid and Flexbox support
CSS Grid e Flexbox have become pillars for creating advanced layouts, with Subgrid added in the 2023 Interop project. While support is solid, the focus is now on further improving interoperability, especially in complex scenarios. Developers can confidently adopt these technologies knowing they are robustly supported, but work continues to further refine these essential layout tools across all browsers.
Pointer and Mouse Events: to improve input handling
Pointer events represent a unified model for managing pointer devices such as mice, pens, and touchscreens. Over the course of the Interop project, the Pointer and Mouse Events focus area showed significant progress, increasing the test success rate from 34% to 81%. While this represents a notable improvement, the focus remains on further refinements to ensure a cohesive input experience across all platforms.
PopOver HTML: Built-in famework for pop-up messages
PopOver in HTML represents a new frontier in the creation of overlays and popups within the browser. It offers developers an integrated way to manage elements that appear and disappear on different sections of the page. Supported in Chrome and Safari since 2023, the attribute was recently added in versions of Firefox Nightly.
Relative Color Syntax: Maximum flexibility in page design
Using style sheets, designers and web developers can compose pages using color schemes that, in turn, reference other colors. Safari was the first to introduce this feature, capable of significantly increasing the flexibility of applications. Subsequently, Chrome and Edge followed the same approach.
requestVideoFrameCallback: Dynamic video layout optimization
The dynamic management of layout per i video integrated into web pages can be complex, especially when frame sizes vary. THE “P
requestVideoFrameCallback gives developers the ability to gain information about video frames, allowing for dynamic layout adjustment. While already supported, its inclusion in Interop 2024 underlines the commitment to ensuring comprehensive and long-lasting support for this useful feature.