A List Apart has a timely article titled Understanding Progressive Enhancement discussing the perceptual differences between graceful degradation and progressive enhancement. I enjoyed seeing Steve Champeon’s idea given new light. Additionally, now is as good a time as any to have a go at these topics, with the many new enhancements being added to today’s browsers, while antiques still cutter cyberspace. I could have done without the cloyingly cute M & M analogy in the article, but that’s probably my inner Cranky Woman having a go this AM.
I’ve written about graceful degradation, previously. Graceful degradation means applying modern technology but ensuring the application doesn’t negatively effect those viewing a web site with an Antique (remaining nameless). However, contrary to the ALA author’s statement of Under this paradigm, older browsers are expected to have a poor, but passable experience, graceful degradation is just that: gracefully degrading, meaning that though the person using the Antique doesn’t get all the bells or whistles, their experience at the site is more than “poor but passable”.