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Subject: Re: UKNM: just one last rant on... browser compatibility - that old chestnut
From: Clay Shirky
Date: Mon, 27 Sep 1999 10:12:42 +0100

> Let me offer an alternative view on that, the people using old browsers
> are either students whose IT departments haven't upgraded browsers
> and have no money to spend online or academics/techies who are
> stuck in the past.

this is wrong.

if you look at the adoption curves for each of the browsers, netscape
1.0 looks like a cliff-face - everybody adopted it, up from mosaic,
incredibly quickly. by the time you get to 4.0 browsers the adoption
rate slows considerably, and this at a time when network population is
still growing more than a third annually.

if adoption rates are slowing but network growth is not, then the
delta between the average user's browser and the most recent release is
growing, not shrinking.

from december of 1994 through february of 1995, the entire net, to a
very good approximation, had the most up to date browser - netscape
1.0. we will never see that happen again.

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