University of Birmingham
Web Development Team (School of Computer Science)
W3C Standards Compliance:
Must render visually similar on Netscape 4.x as well as newer browsers.
Must render in a useable manner in lynx
Must correctly resize to print on portrait A4 paper
In 2001, the School of Computer Science (University of Birmingham) was looking to revamp their sprawling collection of pages and bring them together with a single style (where, before, they had grown organically as the web matured). However, they were distinctly unhappy with the then-new design being rolled out across much of the rest of the university due to it's inability to scale to print on A4 paper, it's reliance on IE specific code, and lack of support for text browsers. Aiming to duplicate the general design the rest of the University was adopting but solving all the negative points, the result was this site. Encompassing over 23,000 pages, the site is Netscape 4.x and later compatible and will work within text browsers such as lynx. The need for Netscape 4 support limits the site code to mostly HTML 3.2 and CSS 1. The site is also fully resizable and will print well on portrait paper. Along with designing and writing the site, all the pages were migrated across servers and re-organised - using redirects to provide a compatibility layer from the old structure to the new. Only an estimated 0.05% of links were found to be broken after the move, well below the level considered acceptable.