IE7 Is Innocent!

Friday, September 29, 2006 23:29 | Filed in Accessibility, Life, Standards, Technology

After noting only the other day that one of the problems is that standardistas agree with each other on pretty much 90% of everything but manage to find the remaining 10% of such worth that they seem able to spend pretty much all of their time bickering about it, I managed to find something from a standardista that I disagreed with and just couldn’t stop myself from arguing about it.


So it’s with some trepidation that I launch into this, where I’m about to disagree with Roger Johansson of the excellent 456 Berea Street site, particularly since he was nice enough to agree with me on my thoughts on DOCTYPEs Anyway, he’s been saying:

Since the release of IE 7 beta 3, and more recently Release Candidate 1, I have been checking my work in IE 7 to see what breaks. There is a lot less breakage than in previous versions, and that’s great. Absolutely fantastic! Thank you, etc


Dear Microsoft: Keep working on IE 7, and don’t release it until you’ve caught up with Firefox, Opera, and Safari. Actually, considering your update track record compared to that of your competitors, it would be preferable if you surpassed them by a healthy margin

Roger Johansson

Now I disagree with this. In my home life I’m a Firefox and Opera kind of a guy; judging from Roger’s likings from Safari, I guess he’s on a Mac rather than a Windows platform like myself but there are two main reasons why I disagree.


Firstly, because IE7 has been designed to be more secure than IE6. It incorporates such things as an anti-phishing filter to warn you when you’re visiting a site that is known to operate and run scams; it runs with less priviledges meaning that it’s less likely that it can be used to compromise your system than IE6 and in general it’s been re-written with the customer’s security in mind. For this reason I would recommend IE7 is released as soon as is practicable and that everyone who uses IE6 and has a PC capable of running IE7 should upgrade as soon as possible.

I’ve not been suckered in my any scams (yet) although they do land in my inbox with some degree of regularity, and nor have I wanted to purchase any pharmaceuticals online. I’m quite happy with the size of my penis, thank you very much. Well, reasonably so, anyway.

Can I just say that I’m impressed that in one post I manage to cover both IE7 and the size of my penis. I doubt the two subjects have ever coincided before.

Anyway to date, my computer hasn’t been compromised either, as I run with up-to-date windows patching, up-to date firewalls and anti-virus software, I have an encrypted broadband wireless internet connection with extra firewall-y stuff built into the hardware, I don’t leave my PC connected to the internet except when I’m using it and I don’t use internet explorer to browse the internet.

But I’m one of a small percentage that doesn’t use IE — the latest browser stats from onestat which they acknowledge under-represent internet explorer — show that in May 2006, approximately 88% of all UK users were using a version of Internet Explorer (85% worldwide). I am more than happy to agree that other browsers may be more standards compliant, more secure and so on than IE6, but the point is, people are still continuing to use IE6 — because the majority of PC owners do not change their browser at all. In fact many wouldn’t know what a browser is and would think of internet explorer as actually being “the internet”.

I have friends and family members who probably fall into this category and I want them to be as safe as possible online. I’d therefore rather Microsoft released IE7 as soon as possible so that these people — or at least the subsection of them that have IE7-compatible PCs with automatic update switched on — will be as safe as possible.

Web Standards

Secondly, because although it may well be the case that IE7 doesn’t fully support web standards such as CSS 2.1, won’t pass the Acid 2 test and so on, it’s still going to provide a more standards-compliant experience than IE6. They’ve fixed a lot of the IE6 bugs. Sure, they’ve not fixed all of them — and they may indeed have introduced new ones, but since it’s so long since IE6 was released, and that Microsoft have now committed to further developments of Internet Explorer, what’s wrong with acknowledging their improvement, and accepting IE7 as a better browser?

It’s not going to be the most standards compliant browser, but it’s going to be more standards compliant than IE6, and surely that’s a good thing?

As I’ve pointed out, the market dominance of IE is such that anyone developing a website for a commercial application needs to ensure that the site looks and works ok in IE. In my working environment, this also applies to applications on our corporate intranet. Therefore while I use firefox and Opera at home, my development at work is very much based around internet explorer (although obviously I try to ensure compliancy with other browsers and platforms as well).

If IE7 is more standards compliant, once the market share for this increases, this will reduce (although probably not eliminate) the number of hacks I need to use to make sure my sites render correctly in different browsers — note the word is correctly not identically! So again, if IE7 is a success it will make my life easier, and it will be more standards compliant than it was. Which is again surely a good thing?

In fact, one reader of Roger’s article seem to have felt pretty much the same thing, saying:

Right now we’ll take all the bug fixes we can, and development and updates will hopefully come faster.Nate Cavanaugh

Hear hear! It might not be perfect, but it is better!

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3 Comments to IE7 Is Innocent!

  1. says:

    August 30th, 2011 at 10:23 pm


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  2. test says:

    September 20th, 2011 at 5:18 pm


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  3. Jessie says:

    September 5th, 2012 at 4:12 am

    At last! Someone who understands! Thanks for potsnig!

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