I have a page that I am working on, and I have it set at 980px width, but I am wondering if it would be ok to go up to something like 1020px or 1040px width. It is one of my first pages, so I am not sure, but I know that I dont want to mess with all the flexible layout etc (that adjusts to browser size etc).
1. The larger the screen size the less likely a user is to have the browser window set to the full screen size 2. Small screen devices are becoming increasingly popular.
With the range of screen sizes and connection speeds both increasing it really isn't possible to create a "one size fits all" web site any longer. Personally I would keep layout as flexible as possible to minimise the need for code to detect specific browsers/screen sizes.
I recently figured that making a page 100% CSS, having an horizontal textual navbar and moving the left vertical navbar to the right, has two benefits It resizes nicely in small screens (mobiles) and brings the content that really matters in direct focus.