Dumb CSS: cursor pointer or hand?

So I had an occasion to peruse someone else’s CSS today, when I came across this peculiar construct:

  cursor: pointer;
  cursor: hand;

Do what? Set the cursor to “pointer” and then set it to “hand”? Whut?

After a bit of research, I found out that this is accepted provided that you are supporting IE5 and IE5.5 users. Double whut?

Back to the Olde Days. It seems that in those times, Microsoft had gone its own way with regard to displaying a pointing cursor, usually shaped like a hand with extended index finger. They used, well, hand. Everyone else, pointer. With IE6, Microsoft added cursor:pointer (whereas everyone else allowed cursor:hand as a grudging alternative, it seemed, even though it was off-spec). So, in essence, from IE6 onwards, cursor:pointer was – and is – the way to go. The extra CSS for the hand cursor is not standard and is ignored by modern browsers. (See here on the quirksmode site.)

Hence, a gentle nudge, dear reader. Check your own CSS and get rid of those cursor:hands. You really don’t want users who are still relying on IE5 or IE5.5 for their browser, do you?

Album cover for The Very Best of Electric Light OrchestraNow playing:
Electric Light Orchestra - Here Is The News
(from The Very Best of Electric Light Orchestra)

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