back to article Chrome 38's new HTML tag support makes fatties FIT and SKINNIER

Google has recently pushed out Chrome 38, for desktop and mobile devices. Google updates its browser every six weeks – so often, in fact, that much of the time there isn't much in the way of new or worthwhile features. Not so with this release. Among the changes Chrome 38 has support for new features in JavaScript, as part …

  1. Tony W

    Mixed blessing

    Even more maps and charts with text that can't be read when enlarged because it's only a few pixels high.

    1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Mixed blessing

      Part of the point of picture and the new img attributes is to handle precisely that case. Read the blog post that the article links to.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Coat

    So screen size doesn't matter anymore ?

    We will make sure the ads will display just fine now...

  3. sorry, what?
    Pint

    A long time coming... almost there...

    I worked for a company that provided a "pervasive internet" middleware platform that was supporting full content adaptation (not just for screen size but also for target markup such as HTML, XHTML, WML, Voice XML etc.) and this came with an out-of-the-box solution for this problem.

    Not only did it allow selection of the "best fit" from a pre-defined set of image "variants", but it also had its own image transcoder so if you didn't want to spend ages creating all those nice variants you could simply perform a (cached) server-side transcoding.

    Again, this transcoding could account for image size but also image format and maximum image size (in data terms, so you could adjust image quality to allow for not just device but also network capability).

    We had all this back in 2004. Unfortunately other aspects of the platform didn't keep pace with technological change and it bit the dust.

    Having said that, it's nice to see this aspect, at least, becoming part of an implemented standard, at last.

    1. ThomH

      Re: A long time coming... almost there...

      This isn't quite the same thing; one of the use cases is giving the browser the power to select what density of image to download based on its own state. So if you zoom in, it can download a higher-density image. If you're near your data bandwidth limit for the month or it's just loading a preview thumbnail, it can download a lower-density image.

      These are not decisions that can be made on the server side or, reliably, via JavaScript.

  4. Phil_Evans

    Adverse Camber ahead...

    "and Microsoft’s Internet Explorer team has indicated that responsive images support is on their roadmap as well." This is politburo speak for 'we don't have an answer - yet - but now you've mentioned it, what a fab idea'. More evidence that the 'roadmap' for IE, so closely tracking the 'Surface' of another dimension is at best erratic and missed the whole multi-device idea.

  5. Steve Graham
    Facepalm

    So, basically another way for websites to decide that they know better than I do how their page looks on my device?

    1. as2003

      What a bizarre reaction!

      Look at it another way: Who *should* decide how a website looks? The person who owns and pays for it, or Steve Graham?

    2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      No, it's another way for sites to offer user agents ("browsers") more choices about how to display the page. If the user agent is well-written, the new img attributes give the user more control over rendering.

      The picture element is a bit of a mixed bag, since the media rules are supposed to be mandatory.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      > So, basically another way for websites to decide that they know better than I do how their page looks on my device?

      No, exactly the opposite. And you could have made this a simple question instead of turning it into a smartarsey display of ignorance by using that facepalm icon.

  6. Euan 1

    Seems pointless.

    Phones are bordering on having larger resolutions that many laptops and desktops these days. The IT department were trying to make me take a unit with a pathetic 1300x768 screen. Phooey. Never...

    1. Gary Heard

      Re: Seems pointless.

      Need some new glasses......

    2. Jess--

      Re: Seems pointless.

      higher resolution on a phone maybe (my phone matches one of the monitors in front of me) but there is a huge difference in usability between that resolution on an 8 inch screen and the same resolution on a 23 inch screen.

      1. AndrueC Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: Seems pointless.

        there is a huge difference in usability between that resolution on an 8 inch screen and the same resolution on a 23 inch screen.

        Especially when you're the wrong side of 40.

    3. Boothy Silver badge

      Re: Seems pointless.

      What do you mean by 'bordering on'? I think they have already passed them, at least in the budget to mid range area, i.e. places where people don't have an unlimited budget. (Top end of course is a different story).

      As an example, my current (8 month old) phone has a 1080p screen, so is already equal to the most common size of desktop monitor (also being 1080p), and greater than budget to mid range laptops, which typically have 1366x768 screens.

      My GFs new phone now has a 1440p screen, so surpasses all low to mid range resolutions, and is equal to some high end monitors.

      Of course nothing stands still, and if you're not budget constrained, desktop monitors are now coming in 4K resolutions.

      Personally I think 1440p is about as high as a 6" screen would ever need to be, you'd need a magnifying class to see any higher on a screen that size.

      Roll on the 8K and 16K 27" desktops.

      As that would mean cheap 4K monitors :-)

      1. Stevie

        Re: As that would mean cheap 4K monitors

        4K is NOT cheap for a computer monitor.

        Such equipment should cost no more than $99.

        How on earth are we to afford our Oracle licenses if you keep spending thousands on bloody monitors?

    4. Stevie

      Re: Seems pointless.

      My younger SA colleagues all agitated for, and got, double widescreen PCs with added marrowbone jelly.

      They use them for out-of-job-spec YouTube viewing when the boss isn't looking and displaying console output in 3 pt font.

    5. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Seems pointless.

      Phones are bordering on having larger resolutions that many laptops and desktops these days.

      Not everyone wants to spend their money on expensive phones.

      Resolution isn't the entire story, particularly for people with reduced visual acuity. Which is pretty much everyone who lives long enough to tell you damn kids to get off our lawns.

  7. Gis Bun

    Fynny

    Funny how the author failed to mention that the update fixes 150+ vulnerabilities and has 120 other fixes. Both I think are browser records.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Makes sense

    For me the mobile version of facebook in Chrome on Android has been oversizing the pictures in the last few days so they massively overlap the screen and can't be fully viewed as you can't scroll on the mobile version. Sometimes it will sort itself out after a few refreshes, but not for long... Just checked and I upgraded to Chrome 38 a few days ago. The picture tag is a roaring success then!!

  9. Martin-73 Silver badge
    FAIL

    Have they fixed the missing menu bar yet?

    No? Thought not. "Don't be evil" my behind

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If most web developers genuinely cared about this sort of thing, the functionality of the picture tag could be implemented right now as a javascript function acting as an img wrapper. The fact that it's not suggests to me that when this new tag becomes a standard browser element, nearly all sites are going to serve up the same image regardless (or worse, a choice of 2 images, with the smallest one being impossibly blurry until the user zooms in or views it on a higher-resolution monitor).

    In reference to a previous poster, server-side scaling of images is a no-no because it's an exploit waiting to happen. What developer wants to be responsible for a malformed image giving an attacker root on the server or performing DoS because the http server had to parse the image to rescale it?

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