As web browser diversity broadens both on mobile and the desktop, web site compatibility and support of open web standards are more and more important.
In light of the non-compatibility of many websites in Asia outside of Internet Explorer, an open source software promotion forum funded by the governments of China, Japan and Korea have pooled resources to prepare a report that extensively reports on the discrepancies in web interoperability looking at the dominant browser (Internet Explorer) and the leading open source browser (Firefox.) This is not necessarily new information per se, but it is information that was compiled by web experts from China, Japan and Korea.
The foreword of the report states:
NEAOSS Forum (Northeast Asia Open Source Software promotion Forum) was formed by China, Korea and Japan governments and regional organizations for OSS promotion; China OSS Promotion Union, Korea OSS Promotion Forum and Japan OSS Promotion Forum. The Forum intends to promote Open Source Software in the northeast Asia area. NEAOSS Forum formed “WG3: Standardization and Certification Study” in order to study Open Source Software standardization and certification in July 2004. NEAOSS Forum WG3 formed subsidiary group SWG2 in June 2006 to accelerate promotion of OSS, to enhance Web interoperability between an existing proprietary browser, which currently has large market share, and OSS Web browsers. This document was prepared by the NEAOSS Forum WG3 and is classified as Technical Report type 3.
Northeast Asia OSS Promotion Forum Working Group 3 – Report of Web interoperability discrepancy (pdf)
Abstract: This technical report is to identify current situation of Web interoperability and to provide information to public. By figuring out and classifying the Web interoperability discrepancies, this report provides the foundation of further research.
The summary of the report states:
There are total 168 discrepancies reported in the survey. The result of this survey, however, does not reveal all discrepancies between IE and Firefox. It is impossible to gather all discrepancies because this laborious work is similar to fixing all bugs of software.
… (long list of incompatibilities)
It is important that Web developer make their Web content with opened [sic] and widely used format to be accessed by many users.
I am often asked about web site compatibility in Japan or Asia. While this report only covers China, Japan and Korea, it is a clear indication that website compatibility has a long way to go in North East Asia. As the report says, it is “the foundation of further research.”