As you may already know, we released the "Atlas" Control Toolkit a few weeks ago to almost universally positive feedback.

But it's hard to please everyone, and we got some negative feedback on our relative lack of support for Apple's Safari web browser. (Opera was mentioned, too, but it's another story that I may blog about some other day.) Contrary to the article's suggestion, we actively developed and tested our code on both IE 6 and Firefox 1.5; all nine controls worked in both browsers with two very minor exceptions due to specific limitations. However, we didn't have the time or resources to test with Safari, so our results for that browser were not very good. Sorry about that!

This time around, Safari support was a BIG priority. In fact, we probably spent more time with Safari than with IE or Firefox! Safari brings with it a number of peculiarities and unfortunately has not yet been a specific focus of the Atlas team (like us, they hadn't gotten around to implementing complete Safari support). So we started out at somewhat of a disadvantage. But a whole bunch of dedicated effort - and a variety of elegant (and some less-than-ideally-elegant) workarounds - have gotten us to the point where all but two of our controls work great on Safari! That's a pretty significant improvement for only three week's time during which we also fixed bugs, added new features, helped users on the "Atlas" Control Toolkit Forums, incorporated a bunch of their feedback, and added new documentation.

Oh, yeah, we also added *four* new controls to the Toolkit!! (Which all work flawlessly under Safari, by the way.) I'm happy to introduce the...

  • AlwaysVisibleControl: Docks any panel to the browser edge so it remains visible all the time!
  • DropShadow: Adds attractive drop shadows to any control on the page!
  • ModalPopup: Shows styled modal UI without using HTML dialogs!
  • RoundedCorners: Rounds the corners of any control for a clean, professional look!

The release notes for the latest version outline a bunch of other improvements we made in the past three weeks. Please take a minute or two to read about all the new stuff. And while you're at it, sample the new (and existing) controls on the web right now (no install required). Then go ahead and download the new Toolkit so you can start creating your own controls!

As always, if you have any feedback, please share it with us on the forum (or email me)!!

Next up: Enabling community submissions to the Toolkit... (Yum, it's going to be good!)