Mark Wubben over at NovemberBorn has recently announced the release of the long awaited sIFR 3 alpha. When I first found the time at work to play with sIFR 2.x and had the opportunity to include it on a UK government site I had been working on I was absolutely convinced that it was the new alternative to accessible text headings.
sIFR (Scalable Inman Flash Replacement) brought the promise of gorgeous looking headings in any font you choose whilst preserving valid structural mark-up and also a saving on the time of having to generate images for each of your graphically styled headings.
In practice after including sIFR on a few client projects I began to stumble across bugs and difficulties, transparent backgrounds, font sizing and font wrapping just to name a few. I became rather resistant to using sIFR 2.x on client sites due to the unpredictable nature of any text that got close to a line in length, that may now change with the sIFR 3 alterations to those features.
I’ve started playing with sIFR 3 alpha today in the new design I’m developing for this blog and I’m already seeing a fair improvement in the features… the font sizing issues appear to have been resolved, transparent backgrounds are supported in full for the browsers that support transparent Flash movies, yes, there are a few bugs remaining but it’s only an alpha release.
Keep your eyes peeled over at the sIFR 3.0 alpha pages for future developments and bugs that fellow developers may have already experienced.