State of the Browser

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The State of CSS 2021

There has arguably never been a better time to be working with CSS. We have so many more tools available at our disposal than even just a couple of years ago. Scroll snap, Motion Path, Level 5 Media Queries and CSS functions min(), max() and clamp() are just some of the CSS features that have got me excited in the last year or two, but even these are old-hat compared to the buzz around container queries, or LCH colours, for instance. It can be hard to keep up with the pace of change, but as a developer I would argue that one of the most important qualities to have is curiosity. That doesn’t mean instantly adopting new tools and features the second they arrive (and burning yourself out trying to keep up). It means being open to the possibility that there might be a better way of doing something, and being able to evaluate it objectively when the need arises.

I’ll admit, there are plenty of CSS properties that fly under my radar, simply because I’ve never had a reason to use them. That’s okay, because I know that when the time comes where I’m not sure of the best way to implement something, I’ll undoubtedly come across what I need via a quick search, and that’s when I’ll have the opportunity to learn.

It’s helpful for browser vendors and spec authors to get a good picture of the tools and features developers are using day-to-day, so they know what to prioritise. That way, we’ll hopefully get much-longed-for features faster. Surveys are one way to get a broad picture of the industry, and the annual State of CSS survey aims to provide just that. When I took this survey I was surprised by how many CSS properties I wasn’t aware of, which led to me Googling and learning a few things!

No survey is perfect, and there is invariably some degree of bias encoded into the results, depending on the pool of participants. It’s important that the range of opinions is representative of the many different people working in the industry, so capturing as diverse an audience as possible is crucial. So I encourage you, if you work with CSS in any degree, to take the survey today — your opinion counts.

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