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Box of Browsers

by James E. Clemens II

One of the most widely used programs installed on your machine is the Web Browser, yet it is often overlooked. In fact, many computer users do not even know what a web browser is.

Every time you surf the web, you use a nifty, little (but complex) program called a web browser. They come in different colors and styles, most are loaded with features that are customizable, yet all web browsers come with a few concerns: privacy & security.

If you have spent any time online, you probably have used the ever so popular Internet Explorer (the blue e on your desktop) by Microsoft. Or maybe you're part of the crowd that felt IE was insecure, so you jumped ship to Firefox. And just maybe, your one of the elite thinkers that have harnessed the powers of Opera. Regardless of the brand, web browsers have been hard at work for you, bringing you every article you are reading. 

Stay tuned for some serious studies of web browsers. Not only will we discuss the top five, but we are going to break down the history of web browsers and bring you an all inclusive listing of web browsers! If you haven't tried a new web browser lately, you may want to give one a spin. Or try adding some new features to your current one.

Either way, it is possible to completely change your online experience by changing your web browser! 



Internet Traces

Click the button below to view all of the personal information given out to every web site you visit. Of the many items listed for you to be concerned about: your IP address should be the biggest!

Whenever a device connects to the internet, it is assigned an address so it can send and receive data. This address is called an IP (internet protocol) address. There are two type of IP addresses - one that is stuck to your machine (static) and the one that is stuck to your connection (dynamic) and given out by your ISP (internet service provider) each time you connect from a pool of many IP addresses. 

While they both will get you online, a static address opens up many security and privacy issues. By choice you should demand to have a dynamic IP address.

To find out what type of IP address you currently have, click the button below and write down the IP address and then the next time you go offline and then reconnect back online (this is the only time your dynamic address would change), stop back by and compare the two addresses.



Here are a few browsers that are currently in use.
















All of these browsers feature:

  • Modern web page compatibility with: HTML, CSS, SSL, JavaScript, and more.

  • active content support such as Plug-ins, Java, and more.

  •  Integrated Search bars.

  • Tabbed browsing feature.

  • Cookies - support & management.

  • Ad blocking and/or pop-up blocking features.

  • Download Managers.


A collection of alternative web browsers can be found at the W3 or World Wide Web Consortium, as some like to refer to them as.


Are there accessibility guidelines for web browsers?

Printable Version

Article ID: 154
General Topic(s): Web-based Information and Applications

by University of Washington

Web browsers fall under the category user agent, which the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C®) has defined as follows:

Any software that retrieves and renders web content for users. This may include web browsers, media players, plug-ins, and other programs—including assistive technologies—that help in retrieving and rendering web content.

In order for web content to be accessible, web content designers must design accessible content, and user agents must be able to deliver that content in an accessible way. The W3C, through its Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI™), has developed guidelines for both parties. Guidelines for designers include the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines and XML Accessibility Guidelines. Guidelines for user agents are the User Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG). A user agent that conforms to these guidelines will promote accessibility through its own user interface and through other internal facilities, including its ability to communicate with other technologies (especially assistive technologies). Furthermore, all users, not just users with disabilities, are expected to find conforming user agents to be more usable. Below are the twelve guidelines contained within UAAG 1.0:

  1. Support input and output device-independence
  2. Ensure user access to all content
  3. Allow configuration not to render some content that may reduce accessibility
  4. Ensure user control of rendering
  5. Ensure user control of user interface behavior
  6. Implement interoperable application programming interfaces
  7. Observe operating environment conventions
  8. Implement specifications that benefit accessibility
  9. Provide navigation mechanisms
  10. Orient the user
  11. Allow configuration and customization
  12. Provide accessible user agent documentation and help

The following AccessIT Knowledge Base articles may also be of interest:

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