Browser Compatibility

General Page Rendering Issues

When I first uploaded this site to the Internet, the available web browsers played fast and loose with the rules of rendering HTML. The two most popular browsers at the time were Internet Explorer and Netscape Navigator. On Macintosh computers which I was using, Safari was becoming standard. There was no guarantee that a web page would look the same on all three browsers. And so, it was necessary to check that the page rendered correctly on the supported browsers. Things have improved considerably over the years, so that there is much less variation between how browsers render HTML. because there are also far more different browsers available, I can’t ensure compatibility with every one of them. Consequently, I now use only Firefox for checking the page rendering. I am in the process of updating all of the pages on this site. The updated pages all use the most basic HTML code and style sheets which should not cause any problems on modern browsers. Older pages that have not yet been updated may contain some code kludges that were added for compatibility between browsers, and could possibly create problems with current browsers. These will be updated eventually as I slowly make my way through all of the sites pages. However, if you find problems with pages that have a “Last Updated” date from mid-2022 or later, then please report the problem to me.

Special Characters

This site makes frequent use of Greek letters and mathematical symbols. All of the pages use UTF-8 text encoding and should be compatible with modern browsers. However, I received reports of a few characters that rendered differently on different platforms. I initially blamed Microsoft’s Internet Explorer because it was the browser being used by the person who reported the problem. However, I later discovered that the problem was actually caused by the substitution of a font different from the one specified, as the specified one was unavailable on that platform.

The culprits were two versions of the letter phi. There is the Greek letter phi and the mathematical symbol phi whose glyphs are switched in some fonts. Apparently, some font designers have taken liberties for reasons of esthetics, which makes it impossible to ensure that the correct version will be displayed unless the font is known to the web page creator beforehand. In the list below, they appear correctly because they've been pre-rendered as inline images.

Symbols Used on this Site

√ - Square root

× - Multiplication sign

ℓ - Script lowercase L

¼ - Fraction 1/4

⅓ - Fraction 1/3

½ - Fraction 1/2

⅔ - Fraction 2/3

¾ - Fraction 3/4

α - Lowercase alpha

β - Lowercase beta

γ - Lowercase gamma

θ - Lowercase theta

µ - Lowercase mu

π - Lowercase pi

- Greek Lowercase Phi and Math Symbol Phi (no longer used—see above)

ψ - Lowercase psi

ω - Lowercase omega

If your browser fails to display any of these characters, or if you find any other browser incompatibilities, please send me an email with the following information:

Back to:
This page last updated: February 3, 2023
Copyright 2010, 2023 Robert Weaver