14 January 2007


Northwest Territories Website - Unacceptable

In the website operated by the Environment and Natural Resources Department of the Government of the Northwest Territories, the Home Page prominently displays this:
"Site best viewed at 800 X 600 resolution."
NWT Environment and Natural Resources Department
This is an unacceptable approach to the design of a government website. Fewer than one in five computers now have screens as small as 800×600px (source).
             Screen sizes in use
Larger 1024x768 800x600
2006 Jul 19% 58% 17%
2006 Jan 17% 57% 20%
2005 Jul 14% 55% 25%
2005 Jan 12% 53% 30%
2004 Jul 10% 50% 35%
2004 Jan 10% 47% 37%
What do they expect? Do they really think that each citizen who views this site should go out any buy a monitor (in the now nearly-unobtainable) small size 800 by 600 pixels?

It is the responsibility of the website designer to see that any website operated by any government is designed to work properly with
(1) at least four or five of the most-used browsers, and
(2) several screen sizes, as are currently in use by citizens.
It is the responsibility of the department management to see that the site designer is meeting this requirement.

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