Plain HTML works

Great piece from Terence Eden on the importance of simple HTML.

If your laptop and phone both got stolen – how easily could you conduct online life through the worst browser you have? If you have to file an insurance claim online – will you get sent a simple HTML form to fill in, or a DOCX which won’t render?

What vital information or services are forbidden to you due to being trapped in PDFs or horrendously complicated web sites?

Are you developing public services? Or a system that people might access when they’re in desperate need of help? Plain HTML works.

You may or may not have noticed that I changed the design of this site last night after 4 years of having the old one. I used to strive for aesthetically pleasing themes until I realised just how much data they used and how slow they were (thanks Lighthouse). There are probably “cleaner” themes than this one and it’s still a work in progress but HTML and readability will always be my priority.

If your site relies on JavaScript over HTML, it’ll be blank if it breaks. HTML can be “broken” and still work. Think about that before you put your faith in a million and one JavaScript libraries for a 5-page site.

See also: Tatiana Mac on Hacking Digital Style Guides for Accessibility

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