The Internet Explorer Onslaught

Album Cover: It's Not Me, It's You

"I'm not a saint, but I'm not a sinner...everything's cool as long as I'm getting thinner."
Lily Allen / The Fear

Posted on August 10, 2004 3:55 PM in Browsers
Warning: This blog entry was written two or more years ago. Therefore, it may contain broken links, out-dated or misleading content, or information that is just plain wrong. Please read on with caution.

I took a considerable break from reading my blog subscriptions (yes, two days does qualify as a considerable break), only to find, when I returned, an onslaught across the Web concerning Internet Explorer, its changes in SP2, and the possibility of version 7 showing up before Longhorn does.

As I've mentioned here before, the IE development team has been ramping up as of late, and it comes as no surprise now that Firefox is starting to chew away at Microsoft's browser's bloated market share. However, rumors are buzzing now, thanks to an article at InternetNews.com and subsequent echoing from sites like Slashdot.

The fact that Microsoft has decided to listen is a big deal. I almost feel a bit sorry for them, since they doubtless hear the same four things over and over, more or less: "give us support for PNG," "give us better support for CSS," "give us tabbed browsing," and "help us read our feeds." The thing about Microsoft is, though, that when they start paying attention (something they haven't done since back in the Netscape days) they actually do come to play ball. They design to spec and they find creative ways to make Web browsing useful. This is why I'm most excited about what is currently going on.

Another thing that excites me about this is how people are seeing it all from the right perspective (at least the people I pay attention to). Rafael Ebron, one of The Mozilla Foundation's lead marketers, said the following about the prospect of IE developments:

...it's good to see that Microsoft is continuing its work in browser development.

Clearly, there's more work to be done in the browser space. There are many features yet to come like CSS 3 columns, DOM Load and Save, SVG, lots of cool stuff. The Web needs to continue to move forward, so it's good to see.

Even cooler, though, was reading "go competition!" in the post on Slashdot, since, as I've stated here before, end users are the ones who stand to benefit from all of this hooplah. I personally don't care who wins this browser war, or even if it ever ends. As long as there's competition, we can move out of the stagnancy and watch as the Web as we know it evolves and becomes even more usable.

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