• Hollywood, Florida

Trust

Jeremy doesn’t trust third-party code, but…

I’m much more trusting of native browser features—HTML elements, CSS features, and JavaScript APIs. They’re not always perfect, but a lot of thought goes into their development. By the time they land in browsers, a whole lot of smart people have kicked the tyres and considered many different angles. As a bonus, I don’t need to install them. Even better, end users don’t need to install them.

See, I am extremely confident that pretty much any HTML I write today will render the same way in 50 years’ time. How confident am I that my CSS will work correctly? Mmmm…70%. Hand-written JavaScript? Way less, maybe 50%. A third-party service I install on a website or link to? 0% confident. Heck, I’m doubtful that any third-party service will survive until next year, let alone 50 years from now.

I don’t think this is a cynical view of the web though! It feels realistic and, to me, oddly realistic: if we choose to build on strong foundations then it’s okay when we want to go “up the stack” and introduce some maybe more fragile things. Some of the fragile stuff is a really good idea, and useful today, so perhaps we should move that further “down” into the foundations so that they’re stable for the future.

I wonder what is up the stack that needs to be moved further down today…