File Under: HTML5, Web Standards

Modernizr Collects HTML5 Fallbacks for Older Browsers

5You’ve been eager to dip your toes into the waters of HTML5 and CSS 3 for your next project, but you’re a little concerned about what older browsers are going to make of your newfangled markup. Fear not — there’s a pretty good chance that whatever you’re doing in HTML5, there’s some sort of fallback that approximates the same thing for older browsers, even those that can’t make heads or tails of HTML5.

There are dozens of workarounds. Like a short JavaScript snippet to help IE style HTML5 elements it can’t understand, or a way to make older browsers understand CSS 3 rules. People have already created a lot of these workarounds, and the only tricky part is finding them.

Enter Modernizr’s All-In-One Entirely-Not-Alphabetical No-Bullshit Guide to HTML5 Fallbacks. As the title suggests, the Modernizr team is collecting all of the shims, fallbacks and other tools available to help web developers ensure that modern websites and apps still work in older browsers.

The list covers nearly all aspects of HTML5, from canvas to the various APIs to simple scripts for styling the new elements. There are even a few solutions for CSS 3.

Unfortunately, not every new feature in HTML5 has a fallback for older browsers. For example, drag-and-drop functionality like what’s available in Gmail simply can’t be replicated in older browsers. Nor does the (little used as far as we can tell) new device element or some of the less common tags like <progress>, <meter> or <datalist>.

Still, while not everything has a workaround, Modernizr’s guide is the most comprehensive collection of fallbacks we’ve seen. Bookmark it for future reference. And if you’ve found something not listed on the site, be sure to let them know.

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