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What's with the JS-only dropdown menus?

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So, the dropdown menus on the user bar and on the main nav only work when Javascript is turned on. Granted, some features of IPB and the suite can only be used with Javascript (like this RTE I'm using here) but it does bother me when degradation is less graceful than it could be. The menus could easily be changed to ones that use CSS to pop open on hover, then a bit of JS to override that behaviour and implement on-click opening instead. I even made a little page to show how easy it is (although granted, I cheated and used jQuery instead of Prototype. You get the idea though). An added bonus is that, since the dropdowns will work all of the time, you can even put absolutely essential links like logout in them, as I've done there.

Having said all that, I'm sure you're aware of this issue and have already considered - and rejected - changing it. I'd be interested to know why.

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Not having javascript enabled is hardly a concern in 2012, I'm afraid. If you disable javascript, you can expect more than half the web to not work correctly. It is well accepted these days that users who disable javascript understand this and accept the broken functionality.

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It just irritated me that it was something that was so easy to do. I usually don't mind if it's something that simply cannot be done without JS ...yet with perhaps half an hour's work I created a version of the current IPB header that (almost!) works perfectly. In case you're wondering, it's here. There are still some issues with the positioning of the user dropdown, but I've given up on finishing it off because I've realised by doing a bit of testing here with JS off that this attitude runs right the way through IPS's products to the extent that major work needs to be done to the whole thing to bring it up to a reasonable standard. Attachments, for instance, are downright deceptive with JS off. You get the input field to upload a file, which IPB simply ignores when it's uploaded with the form, and your post goes up with no attachment. Polls, also, are completely absent. Both of these things are trivially easy to do without JS, but weren't even attempted.

I'm going to stop bothering to look for things now. I'm sure I'd find plenty more easily-avoidable issues if I looked through the whole codebase. I'll just mark that down as a point against IPB (on the off-chance that I'll need community software in the near future - yes, I realise I've been saying I might need a license soon for a couple of years now... but... :P )

What happened to the web accessibility movement? Was it all for nothing? Should we go back to using tables for layout too, while we're at it?

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There are "in an ideal world we'd have this, that, and x, y and z". Then there is "this is the real world, what is actually important?".

In the real world, users who have javascript disabled expect that they will get a significantly degraded experience. We feel our time is best spent making our products shine for the 99% of the web who do not disable javascript. There was a time when falling back was more a concern, specifically when browsers had varying support for the technology. Today, every single browser, including the vast majority of mobile browsers, support javascript without issue, and typical users do not turn it off.

We could spend a month implementing fall backs for features when javascript is disabled, however this would be useful to perhaps .005% of all users using IP.Board.
Or we could spend a month implementing the next cool feature that while revolutionize how you use our software.

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