Christian Rochford
Written by Christian Rochford on 24 December 2014

Over the course of the web's history a lot of things have changed. Still, even within those changes, there has always been a clear path towards universal adaptability for end users. From the beginnings of JavaScript and web fonts, all the way to Responsive Web Design. Yet, images, one of the web's most popular and most important components, have remained stubbon, inflexible at their core. They remain the number one stumbling block for web designers implementing a truly responsive web environment in both form and performance. And without Polyfills and crafty CSS, this was looking to be just how it was going to be.

There is hope, though, with the latest HTML specification for the <picture> element. It gives web designers the most semantic way to group an image in multiple sizes and formats in order to display the most appropriate version to each user. This was all just specification for the future, but the web changes very quickly so it is already usable Chrome and Opera. It is currently in development for Safari and Firefox, and under consideration for Internet Explorer. Of course, even if/when it is implemented for IE, with the large amount of legacy support needed, it won't be a all-encompassing and practical solution for all users until the future. But don't let that deter you from using it, because we should be striving to not only supporting legacy browsers but also future proofing our code.