sIFR 2.0 Released

It’s released! A long effort of several months is finally complete. sIFR 2.0 is here.

I’m all worn out from writing the official sIFR landing page so I’m going to keep this entry short, but I’ll just say that this release is the realization of everything we’ve always strived for in sIFR: rich, accessible typography for the masses with no pitfalls under any reasonable browsing conditions.

Release Candidate 4 was pretty solid, but this final release adds two improvements to the already rich feature set: the ability to show browser text while Flash text is loading (if desired) and graceful degradation to HTML text if users have FlashBlock installed. We’re particularly jazzed about working through the FlashBlock issue because it was the only circumstance where we felt sIFR wasn’t degrading perfectly, but thanks to the FlashBlock folks’ willingness to work with us and upgrade the FlashBlock extension, all is good in Flash-blocking land now. :)

I’d like to give a final thank you to the following people for the following reasons:

  • Mark Wubben — Mark’s world-class javascript skills are the reason that sIFR is as robust and well-formed as it is. He and I have been working together long-distance from Seattle to The Netherlands for several months now, and I can say he’s the easily the best javascripter I’ve ever collaborated with. His only shortcoming is that he doesn’t have a Mac yet, but that will change before the summer I’m told. If you’re ever in need of a great javascripter or just an object-oriented developer genius, Mark is your guy.
  • Shaun Inman — I can’t really say anything about The Wolf that hasn’t already been said. He is the man. His original IFR DOM-based Flash replacement routine was the catalyst for the creation of sIFR, and to this day, he’s still the first person I bug on Instant Messenger when I have a problem. In fact, I find him so useful that I embedded him in a Dashboard widget earlier this week… details possibly forthcoming (seriously). Shaun has some interesting things he’s getting ready to release as well, so keep an eye on him.
  • Stephanie Sullivan — Hot beach volleyball mom by day, rabid sIFR advocate by night, Stephanie has helped write a lot of the sIFR documentation on the official sIFR Wiki as well as evangelize the technology at conferences and classes around the country. Tonight, Stephanie’s introducing sIFR 2.0 at TODCON in Las Vegas… we wish her luck.
  • Danilo Celic — Along with Stephanie, Danilo is a key contributor over at Community MX. Danilo took the time to create a Dreamweaver extension to export sIFR swf files and even made sIFR tutorial in the form of a slick Breeze presentation… go check it out.
  • Matt May — As an accessibility expert, member of the W3C, and just all around great guy, Matt’s opinion means a lot to us, and when he gave a clean bill of accessibility health to sIFR, we really started to feel great about what we’d done.
  • Joe Clark — Much like Matt, Joe’s opinions on accessibility mean a lot to us. And much like Matt, Joe sees nothing inaccessible about sIFR. We like Joe.
  • Dave Shea — Dave provided a very even-handed review of sIFR back in the beta days which helped us focus on making the good better and making the not-so-good, not-so-bad anymore. Thanks for a good post and the healthy discussion which followed.
  • Andrew Hume — Andrew wrote a great article on his site,, about how and when to use sIFR. He’s also been helpful in explaining proper usage to people when the opportunity arises.
  • Jeff Croft — Croftie’s a big sIFR guy and much like Andrew, he’s been helpful in mitigating some of the discussion around the internet about proper use of this method. Jeff’s site is also a great example of beautiful sIFR use.
  • Everyone who has used sIFR — Without the pool of hundreds of developers putting sIFR through its paces, we wouldn’t have made it as good as it is. There are simply too many combinations of browsers, OSes, plug-ins, and extensions out there to properly test something like this by yourself. To all who have helped us over the last several months, a big thank you.

Alright, now go check it out already!

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59 Responses:

  1. dev: customized typography with sIFR

    during the last few days I’ve been diligently working on a web-application in the area of print/typography, featuring a browser-based text-editor with support for various fontfaces. the main problem in realizing such an editor is the impossibilit…

  2. Dug North says:

    I have discovered a strange edge-case bug in .sifr 2.0 while using Firefox on the Mac OSX.

    Upon initial page rendering the Flash titles show up just fine. I then have a pop up above the main page content (it is a printer-friendly format). As intended, The Flash element are covered by this DIV.

    If you then choose File > Print > Preview from the browser’s menu, the Flash elements reappear and “shine through” the popped up DIV (in the browser window, not the browser’s print preview window). I have not been able to fix this with CSS background or z-index values.

    If I close and reopen the DIV, the Flash element do not shine through. Also, if I click and draw over the popped up DIV (selecting its content), the Flash elements disappear.

    Any ideas?


  3. kidmang says:

    I’m having a similar problem as Dug’s for FF Mac (FF PC, safari, ie6, ie7 are ok)

    I have a drop down menu that covers two sifrs, an h1 and h2. The h1 sifr stays on top of the dropdown instead of being covered. The h2 gets covered just fine. No z-index edits have solved this problem.

    Any suggestions?

  4. erik says:

    Nice piece of work, guys. Great job.

  5. colin says:

    Brilliant: a holy grail for HTML

    had a little trouble installing it for a CMS: as I had to put the swfs at the level of the index.php (and had to add the php path variables to find the various .js, and .css files)

    But thats probably because I’m not using php everyday

    Thanks a lot for all the work

  6. aaron says:

    so i have a question in regards to using sifr on a corporate website. if i would use this technique to display a purchased font (with 5 user licenses) would i be doing something illegal. since it is not a graphic and a font would this be a form of distribution of the font i purchased. this may more of a legal question than anything, but i would like to know if anyone else has run into this problem.

  7. Mike D. says:

    Aaron: Shouldn’t be a problem.

  8. […] Berea Sreet, till synes en dag efter Mike Davidsson lanserade sIFR 1.0. Mindre än ett Ã¥r senare lanseras sIFR 2.0 och sÃ¥vitt jag förstÃ¥r har version 3.0 inte kommit längre än till beta – men det är version […]

  9. How and When Link in this paragraph is broken.
    “Andrew Hume — Andrew wrote a great article on his site,, about how and when to use sIFR. He’s also been helpful in explaining proper usage to people when the opportunity arises.”

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