[Web4lib] Png files and browsers?

Thomas Dowling tdowling at ohiolink.edu
Sat Sep 9 08:49:55 EDT 2006

On 9/8/2006 4:56 PM, McHale, Nina wrote:

> Hi, all,
> What's the status on browser compatibility for png files? I saw this
> page:
> http://www.libpng.org/pub/png/pngapbr.html
> ...and wondered how widely used they are now.

I've been using PNG images in web pages for years - never any
complaints.  As Tyson Tate already posted, versions of IE prior to the
7.0 betas don't support transparency, but there's seldom any pressing
need for that--though it's really slick when it works.

Previous versions of IE were criticized for lack of gamma correction in
PNG images, and it looks like this is still a problem in IE7b2.  So PNG
is probably not your tool of choice if, say, you need it to exactly
match a background color set in a stylesheet.  As an example, view this
page in IE and in either Firefox or Opera:


The PNG images have colors set in Photoshop to be the same as in the
stylsheet.  Only IE renders the PNG's shade of green as a different
color than the CSS background (at least, under Windows...in some
monitors...sometimes, etc.).

Thomas Dowling
tdowling at ohiolink.edu

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