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View Full Version : IE usage drops again as Firefox usage increases



drhowarddrfine
12-02-2008, 03:50 PM
Link (http://marketshare.hitslink.com/firefox-market-share.aspx?qprid=0&sample=28)
Firefox approaches 21% usage while IE drops below 70% according to Netcraft. They also show the areas that FF usage has crossed the 50% usage mark (http://blog.mozilla.com/metrics/2008/12/01/firefox-surpassing-50-market-share-in-more-regions/).

gnomeontherun
12-02-2008, 04:39 PM
That would be great if my users came from those countries...but still good news overall. People are realizing there are other browsers and that they can upgrade, slowly but surely.

Sure I hate working with IE6, and IE7 wasn't the perfect upgrade, but it was a big leap. I know we as developers often want to claim FF superiority, but consider this. If Microsoft can market their IE8 version, and keep production on the next generation going, I likely see them stemming the tide and making a solid stance.

Why? Well there are still so many users who don't realize that IE isn't the internet, and that there are other options. So if they can make a better browser and market it for users to upgrade, then they can clamp down on the competition. They do have the money, the software, and the developers on their side.

We also decry a lot about how Microsoft is dragging, failing to keep up with the competition, and producing lousy systems, but they have also proven to be leaders in the computing world. The competition from FF, Opera, Chrome, is likely only to cause Microsoft to invest more in its technology. I actually see it as a matter of time before IE becomes the preferred browser in development again, unless the IE direction drops drastically.

All that said: I love FF and just can't stand the IE7 interface. So don't worry I love FF, but taking a look at this from outside of the developer world makes me think that my scenario is very possible.

drhowarddrfine
12-02-2008, 05:29 PM
Firefox and Chrome, next versions coming out, will have javascript engines up to 8x faster than IE8. And I might have that wrong, it might be 40x faster.

In the meantime, Windows internet users dip below 90% for the first time. (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/12/02/windows_internet_user_shares_below_90/)

gnomeontherun
12-02-2008, 05:40 PM
But if you try to think like the 'average internet user' they have NO idea what that means, nor will it matter to them. If its easy to use, works, and works well with their system, they will use it. Just my thoughts though!

Millenia
12-02-2008, 06:31 PM
But if you try to think like the 'average internet user' they have NO idea what that means, nor will it matter to them. If its easy to use, works, and works well with their system, they will use it. Just my thoughts though!

So if every site in the world redirected an IE user to an error message, telling them to get FF...

We could eradicate IE?

Fumigator
12-02-2008, 06:32 PM
Yeah I worked with this deaf guy at the county and it blew his mind when I showed him FF. He just couldn't wrap his head around the idea that you can look at webpages without using IE. Part of the problem was his desktop was covered with URL shortcuts.. literally dozens and dozens of links all over the desktop, meticulously arranged. Across two monitors. That was his bookmarking system. To go to another page he would shut down IE and double-click on another URL shortcut.

So when FF took over, all those icons changed to the FF icon and I guess that shorted out the fuse in his brain because he just couldn't recover from that visual change.

I tried to show him how cool tabs were and how they worked... after about 10 minutes of that I just uninstalled FF and apologized for wasting his time.

Later I snuck back to his computer, right-clicked on the desktop and clicked "Arrange Icons By", "Auto-Arrange". (just kidding but that would have been pretty funny if he had a sense of humor)

drhowarddrfine
12-02-2008, 07:36 PM
But if you try to think like the 'average internet user' they have NO idea what that means, nor will it matter to them. If its easy to use, works, and works well with their system, they will use it. Just my thoughts though!That's what I mean. If they visit a site and parts of it run a lot faster, it may be noticed and/or appreciated.

VIPStephan
12-02-2008, 07:40 PM
If its easy to use, works, and works well with their system, they will use it. Just my thoughts though!

That’s true. For the same reason Safari is the most used browser on Apple computers. It’s just there by default and it works. Why should the average Mac user care for a different browser?

You can’t change the masses’ customs unless you’re the Communist Party of China.

drhowarddrfine
12-02-2008, 08:51 PM
You can’t change the masses’ customs unless you’re the Communist Party of China.
Firefox was introduced just 4 years ago and has taken over 20% market share, mostly from IE, so I guess you can.

gmrtss
12-02-2008, 11:50 PM
So if every site in the world redirected an IE user to an error message, telling them to get FF...


Sounds like a good game plan to me!

gnomeontherun
12-03-2008, 12:00 AM
So if every site in the world redirected an IE user to an error message, telling them to get FF...

We could eradicate IE?

No, we'd cause a pandemic over Internet failures. Realize how many of those 'average Internet users' have no idea what FF is.

Example: my family. I've tried, trust me I've tried, to convince them to use FF. I installed it, I set it as the default, its in their quick launch toolbar, start menu, desktop, and yet they find that sticky old IE icon somewhere buried in the Start menu...

Apostropartheid
12-03-2008, 12:00 AM
So if every site in the world redirected an IE user to an error message, telling them to get FF...

We could eradicate IE?
Except I like my IE. :(

drhowarddrfine
12-03-2008, 12:27 AM
In what way? For web developers IE is pitiful. I can see some users liking it for surfing but I don't know what advantages there would be.

_Aerospace_Eng_
12-03-2008, 08:50 AM
No, we'd cause a pandemic over Internet failures. Realize how many of those 'average Internet users' have no idea what FF is.

Example: my family. I've tried, trust me I've tried, to convince them to use FF. I installed it, I set it as the default, its in their quick launch toolbar, start menu, desktop, and yet they find that sticky old IE icon somewhere buried in the Start menu...

You just have to do it right. Get rid of the icon in the start menu, change all icons to match the IE icon. You could even keep it named as Internet Explorer. On top of that style it to look like IE. ;)

I've done it and my family now uses it.

Apostropartheid
12-03-2008, 08:07 PM
In what way? For web developers IE is pitiful. I can see some users liking it for surfing but I don't know what advantages there would be.
I like it. It has colored tabs. It has multithreaded tabs. It's prettier than Firefox's default. That's all I'm really concerned about. I'm a web designer, but, to be honest, I've dropped support for IE 6 and IE 7 really isn't *that* bad.

drhowarddrfine
12-03-2008, 08:12 PM
I like it. It has colored tabs.So does FF.
It has multithreaded tabs.Hmm. I knew something dirty about that but I can't remember what it was.
It's prettier than Firefox's default.Can be customized.
That's all I'm really concerned about. I'm a web designer, but, to be honest, I've dropped support for IE 6 and IE 7 really isn't *that* bad.IE8 is the worst browser on the planet and it's not even out yet. :D

Apostropartheid
12-03-2008, 09:05 PM
So does FF.
Not by default, at least, and the extension just changes the font color.

Can be customized.
The majority of the themes really stick out and aren't really integrated into the OS (even the ones which do look odd.) Besides, I've not met a pretty one apart from the one which I used with the Dust Ubuntu theme, which integrated fantastically. I use Firefox on that platform, so no, I'm not close-minded.

IE8 is the worst browser on the planet and it's not even out yet. :D
Be considerate.

Fumigator
12-03-2008, 09:22 PM
Here's a FF color tab add-on that I like:

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1368

Though I'm not going to tell you IE7 sucks and don't use it; if you like it and it suits your needs, fantastic.

My only beef with IE is Microsoft has purposely avoided meeting W3C standards; I think it has kept their marketshare strong by staying proprietary/non-standard.

Apostropartheid
12-03-2008, 10:06 PM
Here's a FF color tab add-on that I like:

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1368

Though I'm not going to tell you IE7 sucks and don't use it; if you like it and it suits your needs, fantastic.

My only beef with IE is Microsoft has purposely avoided meeting W3C standards; I think it has kept their marketshare strong by staying proprietary/non-standard.
Not exactly the same thing: IE8 color-codes tabs depending on its individual origin, which I find really useful. Pretty all the same.

drhowarddrfine
12-03-2008, 10:06 PM
Yeah, Colorful Tabs is the only one I'm aware of and it changes the tab color, not the font. And changing the theme color, yes there are canned ones but you can customize almost everything on FF, depending on how much you want to learn how to do. There are some canned ones out there that make it look like Windows,

drhowarddrfine
12-03-2008, 10:08 PM
Not exactly the same thing: IE8 color-codes tabs depending on its individual origin, which I find really useful. Pretty all the same.There is one to do that in FF, iirc, I'll try and find it.

@Fumigator, that's my only beef, too, and a major one at that.

Apostropartheid
12-03-2008, 10:11 PM
There is one to do that in FF, iirc, I'll try and find it.

@Fumigator, that's my only beef, too, and a major one at that.
Tab Mix Plus does something similar I believe, but it's a font change only.

IE8 is getting there. Jus because a browser doesn't adhere to standards doesn't make it a bad browser, however, nor a sin to use it.

That said, I miss AdBlock Plus.

drhowarddrfine
12-03-2008, 10:14 PM
Tab Mix Plus does something similar I believe, but it's a font change only.ChromaTabs (https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/8004)
You might like this one (https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/5627), too.


Jus because a browser doesn't adhere to standards doesn't make it a bad browser
Yes it does. It doesn't work right and developers have to force feed it to keep it on track.

Apostropartheid
12-03-2008, 10:26 PM
Ooh the first one is pretty, loading up my laptop as we speak.

I meant in terms of usability. If Firefox used, I don't know, the Trident engine in IE5.5, it still would be an amazing browser.

gnomeontherun
12-03-2008, 10:35 PM
ChromaTabs (https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/8004)
You might like this one (https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/5627), too.

Yes it does. It doesn't work right and developers have to force feed it to keep it on track.

I hate to ruin a fun party, but does it really matter? If people use it, we have to support it in some manner regardless. As I've already said, IE could grab its share back if it acts quickly. So much work has already been done, so that us as developers can now fairly easily deal with IE without as much worry. Its really IE6 that we have to be concerned about, and IE8 is going to pull IE in line with standards. I don't know about their intentions about dropping standards for propreitary reasons, I really don't see the benefit of that since Frontpage never really became a premiere editing tool (just a cheap one). Need I also say that IE8 passes the Acid2 test, the web standards test. There is now an Acid3 test though, and browsers are yet to pass that one. Thats next gen though.

Regardless, people are free to choose their own browser (it doesn't matter what your opinion is about the browser, and its unlikely you will convince a DEVELOPER who uses IE to switch, I'm pretty sure they would have at least tried FF by now). Its one thing to educate people who have no idea there are other browsers, its another to try to convince a developer who knows about them that their preference is akin to selling your soul. (slight exaggeration...)

While I love add-ons for FF, I wish most of the time I could have them off. FF is so bloated with many addons, but I need those tools sometimes! I never have liked adding things to IE, always feels like I'm about to allow some program access to my whole computer.

PS: There is not a single browser that fully supports web standards, because heck those are still in development.

drhowarddrfine
12-04-2008, 12:20 AM
I hate to ruin a fun party, but does it really matter? If people use it, we have to support it in some manner regardless.Unless someone specifically says it's about usability, on a developer forum I assume they are talking about developing for it. So sometimes I find myself arguing about technical issues while others mean usability.
Need I also say that IE8 passes the Acid2 test, the web standards test.Acid2 is not a web standards test but a test for how browsers handle incorrect markup. Passing Acid2 is good but by no means an indicator of how well any browser handles standard markup. For example, IE8 will be 11 years behind web standards when it's released next year.
There is now an Acid3 test though, and browsers are yet to pass that one. Thats next gen though.The current nightly build of Opera and Safari/Webkit pass Acid3. Firefox is in the upper 50s/100. IE8 is at 11 or so.


Regardless, people are free to choose their own browser (it doesn't matter what your opinion is about the browser, and its unlikely you will convince a DEVELOPER who uses IE to switch, I'm pretty sure they would have at least tried FF by now). Its one thing to educate people who have no idea there are other browsers, its another to try to convince a developer who knows about them that their preference is akin to selling your soul. (slight exaggeration...)Not true at all. Web development web sites consistently have much higher FF usage than IE. Perhaps a mod here can give the stats. One other high profile forum recently posted their stats and were surprised to see they were 60% FF usage (or so).

This is the first time I've been at Coding Forums in over two years. Back then, you were laughed at for promoting web standards and using non-IE browsers for testing. It was why I left. On another forum, someone posted a link to here about something and that's how I found my way back. I was surprised to see how much this place has changed. Pro-standards and pro-compliant browsers. I rarely meet a knowledgeable web developer that would use IE as a test bed for modern code.

Now, perhaps you mean usability again. If you are a Windows user, I can see it might be convenient for some things and having IE as your main browser. My wife and two sons use Windows and don't but.....


While I love add-ons for FF, I wish most of the time I could have them off.Tools->add-ons->disable
FF is so bloated with many addons, but I need those tools sometimes!What are you using?! I have 12 and probably half of them are web dev tools like Firebug. Usually people misunderstand the memory usage thing but I reeeeaalllly am not in the mood to get into that tired, old story.
I never have liked adding things to IE, always feels like I'm about to allow some program access to my whole computer.Not much to add but I see they've picked up a few things from Firefox.

PS: There is not a single browser that fully supports web standards, because heck those are still in development.
Always have been, always will be. As I said, all other browsers are light years ahead of IE in that area. You can even run parts of HTML5 and large parts of CSS3 in them. You can't in IE. Funny considering HTML5 is co-chaired by Microsoft.

gnomeontherun
12-04-2008, 12:52 AM
Well I don't use IE except for testing, but there is nothing wrong with using it in my opinion. I don't understand how you can say its not true that people can choose their own browser...:cool: Of course web dev sites will experience more FF, but that doesn't mean you can't be a developer and use IE.


Acid2 is a test page, written to help browser vendors ensure proper support for web standards in their products....If you’re unfamiliar with the Acid 2 Test, it is essentially a test for browser vendors to use as a means to gauge their standards compliance.

I'm not sure what you mean exactly by that Acid2 is not for web standards but testing how it handles incorrect markup.

I would use IE for testing if I knew the majority of my target audience also used it, why not? It makes sense, and my main argument is that blasting IE in the dev world doesn't change the fact that its still the most used browser out there. Developing and using IE can be advantageous, you just have to know your tools. Some people like to use Dreamweaver, some people like Notepad, and yet they can both be used to produce quality pages that work. Its not about your default browser, its about your skill set that makes your work...well...work.

As far as my FF, it consistently runs around 150K weight. I only have about 6 extensions, all of which are highly recommended/used by others (web dev stuff and adblock). I know often plugins have memory leaks if they weren't done right, but from the opening of FF its around 80K and builds quickly. Its annoying because I dont like opening the Addons dialog and disabling everything, and reenabling it when I need it. There needs to be a shortcut for that in my mind.

I still believe that IE has a good probability of stemming the tide, after all the general public wants to use something that they are familiar with and that's already there. But I've already covered that ;)

drhowarddrfine
12-04-2008, 02:13 AM
I don't understand how you can say its not true that people can choose their own browserNo, I was saying you can convince developers to switch browser.
Of course web dev sites will experience more FF, but that doesn't mean you can't be a developer and use IE.What I meant is, the people who know better, don't use IE. It's kind of like asking a carpenter what brand of drill he buys.

I'm not sure what you mean exactly by that Acid2 is not for web standards but testing how it handles incorrect markup.From the Web Standards Project (http://www.webstandards.org/action/acid2/guide/)
Everything that Acid2 tests is specified in a Web standard, but not all Web standards are tested. Acid2 does not guarantee conformance with any specification.
and

Some 827 people (rough estimate, contents may have settled during shipping) have written to point out that the CSS used in the test is invalid. This is deliberate, as a means of exposing the ability of user agents to handle invalid CSS properly.


I would use IE for testing if I knew the majority of my target audience also used it, why not?I have mixed feelings about that. In order to write markup for IE you are required to sometimes write non-standard markup; that is, markup that behaves one way in IE but isn't according to the standard. While this may work in-house, you create bad habits for the developers who may move on to other jobs and attempt to write the same bad code. It's bad for the 'net and bad for the guy looking for a job.
It makes sense, and my main argument is that blasting IE in the dev world doesn't change the fact that its still the most used browser out there.And declining.
Its not about your default browser, its about your skill set that makes your work...well...work.I sometimes like the analogy of using a calculator for math. If I have four calculators to check my work, and three give the same answer, I'm not going to use the one that gives a different one, no matter how much fudging of the formula I apply to make it work.


As far as my FF, it consistently runs around 150K weight. I only have about 6 extensions, all of which are highly recommended/used by others (web dev stuff and adblock). I know often plugins have memory leaks if they weren't done right, but from the opening of FF its around 80K and builds quickly.FF will use available memory for cache. You can limit that but I'd have to look it up.
Its annoying because I dont like opening the Addons dialog and disabling everything, and reenabling it when I need it. There needs to be a shortcut for that in my mind.That's what I don't understand. I never disable anything.


I still believe that IE has a good probability of stemming the tide, after all the general public wants to use something that they are familiar with and that's already there. But I've already covered that ;)Yeah, that's why the US Justice Department and the EU sued. Next year, Google will have Chrome on OEM PCs as the default browser so changes are afoot.

borntoslow
12-04-2008, 10:51 AM
I think the only person here who i agree with is jeremywilken,

At the end of the day with Browsers it comes down to one thing..what you need it for.

If you are a developer you are always going to choose function over form. Not saying FF has no form but IE will always push for flashy bits, twinkly bits, thats not where FF market is.

IE explorer is so simple to use for average Joe and does the job, again not that FF does not...but why change if it does the job you need. Oh yeah, and looks pretty...Form over function.

Now to why i agree with jeremywillken, and this is a big agree and it came from his first post......

Time for a good old bit of healthy competition, if MS want to throw tons of $$$ at their browser development, rest assured they will build a good product...eventually. Look at how windows mobile has progressed since the iphone...

The one thing that MS has over eveyone else is the infrastucture, staff size and wallet size to grind this one out.

Also do we all know what it means by actuall market share and the statistical implications??? I think some people are getting the wrong end of the stick here.

gnomeontherun
12-04-2008, 12:36 PM
No, I was saying you can convince developers to switch browser.

I agree you can convince them, but its still their choice is my point. Developers should already know all about the pros/cons of IE vs FF or the others so there is nothing wrong with making an educated decision.

Yea, thanks borntoslow, I really think we (as developers) hate IE so much that we often just want it to die rather than deal with it. Yet so many people use it still...and its been making progress (doesn't matter how far out from standards (the average joe doesn't know this term or probably care), the fact is MS has put its foot down and is obviously wanting to stay in the game...so they are likely going to be aggressive).

Anyways, a rousing discussion! :thumbsup:

Fumigator
12-04-2008, 04:40 PM
We as developers do have to deal with IE and that's the bottom line. I'm glad IE7 handles AJAX the right way. My latest project is going to limit access to IE7+, FF2+, Safari3+, and Opera9+. I just don't want to have to code for IE6 and below and since my target audience is going to be a younger nerdy crowd I don't think I'll turn many users away.

drhowarddrfine
12-04-2008, 07:24 PM
No one said we should ignore IE.

(doesn't matter how far out from standards (the average joe doesn't know this term or probably care)I hear that a lot but once more web sites start using modern techniques that IE can't handle, the average Joe will start noticing and caring. When he sees sites running a lot faster and prettier on the other browsers, he'll notice. I'm seeing a lot of talk of SVG usage, something IE can't run, with much more js in "the cloud"; something MS has ignored for years.
the fact is MS has put its foot down and is obviously wanting to stay in the game...so they are likely going to be aggressive).There is a major firestorm between Microsoft and all the other browser vendors regarding JavaScript. Led by Brendan Eich, he's stated that Microsoft made no contributions to the new version but, now that it's about to be released, they come in with all kinds of objections. Though MS co-chairs the HTML5 spec, there are major issues with them getting things done. I have not followed the fight in a while but, last I heard, Wilson isn't participating as he should, then comes in late trying to undo all the work that was accomplished.

Today, the IEBlog set standards back a bit by making another change to how IE8 will/will not support standards with their compatibility mode switch. Didn't finish reading the whole thing but elsewhere developers are shaking their heads.

gsnedders
12-15-2008, 09:47 PM
Acid2 is not a web standards test but a test for how browsers handle incorrect markup. Passing Acid2 is good but by no means an indicator of how well any browser handles standard markup. For example, IE8 will be 11 years behind web standards when it's released next year.

Acid 2 is a test of web standards, exactly because (some of) the web standards say how to treat non-conforming content. CSS 2.1 has long details detailing how to deal with non-conforming content (if any possibly byte-stream has its behaviour undefined, that is an issue in the spec); XML defines that breaking any well-formedness constraint is a fatal error; HTML 5 defines in great length how to parse any byte stream…

Sure, that doesn't mean you can cope with all standards compliant markup, but as it primarily tests CSS and because of how CSS 2.1 is defined it does test a fair amount of CSS behaviour.

As for calling IE8 11 years behind the standards, bear in mind that there are very few documents that have gone to call for implementations in the past 11 years that have much relevance in the real world. IE8 should fully support CSS 2.1 (and was as of the end of October a lot better than beta 2 in terms of major bugs), which is hardly 11 years old. Most of the CSS 3 modules are yet to reach a call for implementations, and as such should only really be supported with vendor prefixes if at all. There's also a fair amount of stuff from HTML 5 going in. Neither CSS 2.1 nor HTML 5 existed 11 years ago. This doesn't sound like 11 years behind to me.


The current nightly build of Opera and Safari/Webkit pass Acid3. Firefox is in the upper 50s/100. IE8 is at 11 or so.

But Opera, Safari, and Firefox all try and support what Acid 3 tests — IE8 fails great numbers simply by not supporting SVG. Is it really more desirable to have broken implementations (like Fx, Op, and Saf had and still have in shipping release) than having no implementation at all.


Always have been, always will be. As I said, all other browsers are light years ahead of IE in that area. You can even run parts of HTML5 and large parts of CSS3 in them. You can't in IE. Funny considering HTML5 is co-chaired by Microsoft.

You can use a fair amount of HTML 5 in IE8, too. Sure, the fun stuff to demo (like canvas) doesn't run, but plenty of the APIs are there. Come IE8 all browsers will support comparable amounts of the standard — just different fragments of it. Opera is probably the best in terms of HTML 5 support, though. As for the chairing of the HTML WG, it is not Microsoft that co-chairs it — it is Chris Wilson and Mike(tm) Smith (the latter soon to be replaced with Sam Ruby). Insofar as chairing goes, you are not representing any company, and as such, their employers are only relevant insofar as who pays them to spend their time on the WG.

As for CSS 3, I'd say most browsers didn't support much, if nothing else because it mainly isn't written yet. Selectors is the only CSS 3 module that could claim to have anywhere near wide-spread support. CSS 2.1 is really where most of the effort of the CSS WG is going at the moment — the main thing holding that back from REC is the lack of a test suite to prove that there are two interoperable implementations of each feature. Who is writing most of these test cases? The IE team. Who is rewriting their layout engine with a view to support them? The IE team. Who has a layout engine designed to cope with things like the Advanced Layout module? The IE team.

IE8 will put IE in a very good position moving forwards. Sure, it might not support much of CSS 3, but it is a far better code-base to be working from to support CSS 3 than pretty much anything else. CSS 2.1 is really where interoperability is most badly needed. I'd rather have CSS 2.1 working fine than having buggy implementations of CSS 3.

drhowarddrfine
12-15-2008, 11:13 PM
As for calling IE8 11 years behind the standards, bear in mind that there are very few documents that have gone to call for implementations in the past 11 years that have much relevance in the real world.
Support for the DOM. Test your browser here (http://www.w3.org/2003/02/06-dom-support.html). I haven't looked at the last beta so I don't know if they've fixed anything there. I think I read they might. In that case, it will only be 8 years behind. Hooray!

But Opera, Safari, and Firefox all try and support what Acid 3 tests — IE8 fails great numbers simply by not supporting SVG. Is it really more desirable to have broken implementations (like Fx, Op, and Saf had and still have in shipping release) than having no implementation at all.I don't think there's anything in the test that forgives a browser for failing to answer the questions. If IE can't do SVG, and SVG is part of the test, then it fails that part of the test.

Yes, those 3 browsers do aim at the test, as did IE8 and that's the only reason it passed. Like I said above, passing the test does not mean that one browser is better at standards than any other.

You can use a fair amount of HTML 5 in IE8, too. Sure, the fun stuff to demo (like canvas) doesn't run, but plenty of the APIs are there.Such as? Haven't looked lately.

You can call <canvas> the 'fun' stuff but then let's call SVG just 'fun stuff', too. Did we call PNG fun stuff when IE didn't support it? Can we call XHTML fun stuff?

As for the chairing of the HTML WG, it is not Microsoft that co-chairs it — it is Chris WilsonWho works for? (Answer: Microsoft) And is in charge of (Answer: IE development)

Insofar as chairing goes, you are not representing any company, and as such, their employers are only relevant insofar as who pays them to spend their time on the WG.Go to the w3.org->about and see if Microsoft is a paying, full standing member. Then see if you can find Chris Wilson's name on that list.

Who is rewriting their layout engine with a view to support them? The IE team. Who has a layout engine designed to cope with things like the Advanced Layout module? The IE team.Who had to rewrite their engine because it was so far behind everyone else? The IE team. Who will still be far behind in CSS3 support when it comes out? The IE team. (See my links below)

Again, IE8 will be where other browsers were a year ago or more ago when it comes out in January, if it doesn't get delayed yet again.

Apostropartheid
12-15-2008, 11:31 PM
We are here and it is now. Further than that, all human knowledge is moonshine.
~ Henry Louis Mencken
Now can we please give this a rest? Internet Explorer may be behind standards (I wouldn't call it 11 years behind standards, but still behind), but keep an open mind. They've changed a lot in a short space of time. Enough already, it's making my head hurt =(

drhowarddrfine
12-16-2008, 03:30 AM
(I wouldn't call it 11 years behind standards, but still behind)
Known, provable and verifiably 11 years behind (as of January btw).

While IE8 will be noticeably better, Microsoft continues to drag its heels in supporting current and future standards. MS contributed little to the new Javascript standard and, when all the other vendors were ready to sign off on it, MS showed up and raised objections which delayed deployment leading to a major write up by Brendan Eich counting off the problems caused by Microsoft and outright calling Chris Wilson a liar. (Google for that war)

In addition, without support with the most used browser, web developers are continually hampered in their abilities to use modern web standards and techniques, such as mentioned in earlier posts. As long as IE dominates the browser landscape, the web will continue to be held back from all its possibilities.

Fortunately, IE has lost 25% of its market share, and up to 50% in some parts of the world. Chrome may be a huge player this year. Microsoft mistakenly put IE6 on Windows Mobile but that's going nowhere and, equally fortunately, Opera is being taken up quite well in that area.

If not for all those other vendors, we would still be using IE6. A tipping point may be reached, soon, where there could be a huge switchover to any other browser. I think Chrome could be the hand that pushes it over. And with the new blindingly fast javascript engines in Firefox and Chrome, it may be what "every man" will be talking about and find their reason to switch. As web developers, we already know and have our reasons and that happy moment may be soon.

gnomeontherun
12-16-2008, 12:43 PM
Now can we please give this a rest? Internet Explorer may be behind standards (I wouldn't call it 11 years behind standards, but still behind), but keep an open mind. They've changed a lot in a short space of time. Enough already, it's making my head hurt =(

I guess it only stops if we stop. I'm not really helping here, but I've just got to say this.

I'm all for discussion, but this has evolved into the same old being beat over our heads post after excruciating post.


As web developers, we already know and have our reasons and that happy moment may be soon.

Please just stop responding. I understand you hate IE, but that is all I see when I read your posts. You cannot continue saying the same things over and to convince us. Hasn't there been a few of us 'web designers' who don't agree with that? You refuse to listen and allow others an opinion. I cannot stand that in a discussion. It is not a discussion actually, but just a lot of ranting.

Besides the best way to debate a topic if you really want to persuade the other side is not to continually tear down what they like. You only make them mad and unwilling to listen. When you tell someone who likes IE that its the worst thing ever, it doesn't mean they will automatically think 'Oh I've been using the wrong browser for years now...how did I never see that?', rather they think 'Oh what? But it works great for me. Look I even can use this address bar and type in a website instead of searching for it! I don't want to change.'

Point and case. Its about the users, not about any of our wildest dreams or hopes.

drhowarddrfine
12-16-2008, 04:21 PM
Please just stop responding. I understand you hate IE, but that is all I see when I read your posts. You cannot continue saying the same things over and to convince us. Hasn't there been a few of us 'web designers' who don't agree with that? You refuse to listen and allow others an opinion.Aren't you being one sided? Am I the one refusing to listen, or are others? Are my facts worth less than others who provide none? If you disagree, provide contrary evidence.

When you tell someone who likes IE that its the worst thing ever, it doesn't mean they will automatically think 'Oh I've been using the wrong browser for years now...how did I never see that?', rather they think 'Oh what? But it works great for me. Look I even can use this address bar and type in a website instead of searching for it! I don't want to change.'This is a web developers site. I'm not talking of average Joe "I can use the address bar". I provided links and pointed to them in my sig.

If people want to make comments against my statements, then expect a rebuttal. Don't expect me to ignore it.

gnomeontherun
12-16-2008, 04:56 PM
I would if there were facts about all of this. However most of it is limited statistics based on a handful of sites and opinion.


“I can prove anything by statistics except the truth”

“Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please: facts are stubborn, but statistics are more pliable”

This site (http://www.upsdell.com/BrowserNews/stat.htm) shows stats from various sites, and look how vast the numbers change from survey to survey.

I keep arguing about how the whole issue matters based on what site VISITORS use, you keep arguing about developers. You are not arguing against me, because you provide a rebuttal only talking about web developers. Ergo, I'm done with this cycle.

drhowarddrfine
12-16-2008, 05:19 PM
You are not arguing against me, because you provide a rebuttal only talking about web developers. Ergo, I'm done with this cycle.
Yes, if we get back to the original topic. You show current statistics of usage. But the topic is that IE usage has dropped. You can't argue with me about that because, again, it is fact and reported by multiple online technical magazines. So I reiterate that fact and it can't be argued against. If you wish to avoid the topic then so be it.

whizard
12-16-2008, 05:56 PM
Bottom Line: FF is gaining support, as it should.. it's a good browser. However, from a USER standpoint, at the very least, so is IE. This is the same concept a lot of linux evangelists have trouble with: If IE works for someone, they're not going to bother getting a different browser. Why should they?

gsnedders
12-16-2008, 06:14 PM
Support for the DOM. Test your browser here (http://www.w3.org/2003/02/06-dom-support.html). I haven't looked at the last beta so I don't know if they've fixed anything there. I think I read they might. In that case, it will only be 8 years behind. Hooray!

Ah yes, DOM. From memory what they don't support of DOM isn't really much of an issue in the real world. Actually, DOM Level 2 Events does cause it's fair share of issues, but the other things really aren't that relevant. FWIW, the DOM still isn't a tree in IE8 (I think Opera which was the other browser that did fairly whacky stuff is now saner).


I don't think there's anything in the test that forgives a browser for failing to answer the questions. If IE can't do SVG, and SVG is part of the test, then it fails that part of the test.

Yes, those 3 browsers do aim at the test, as did IE8 and that's the only reason it passed. Like I said above, passing the test does not mean that one browser is better at standards than any other.

I never argued that it didn't fail that part of the test. I was arguing that having no support is better than having broken support. As for any Acid3's connection to standards compliance, nothing except an exhaustive test suite can make anywhere near a rough statement of thinking that an implementation is compliant (and still then without mathematical proofs you still can't really be absolutely sure you are compliant, but in the case of most specs the spec itself is too ambiguous — dbaron made a desk into a conforming HTML 4.01 UA).


Such as? Haven't looked lately.

Off the top of my head, offline storage, cross-document messaging, @onhashchange (IE8 is the only implementation of that so far). It also supports all the stuff added to HTML 5 based upon proprietary stuff (not all of which has its origins in IE): @autocomplete, embed, @contenteditable, and drag-and-drop support.


You can call <canvas> the 'fun' stuff but then let's call SVG just 'fun stuff', too. Did we call PNG fun stuff when IE didn't support it? Can we call XHTML fun stuff?

No, I called it the "fun stuff to demo". There is a big difference between what might be deemed "fun stuff" and "fun stuff to demo". By "fun stuff to demo" I meant the really visual stuff — canvas and video spring to mind. Most of what they support in IE8 is APIs which certainly will have a big effect on the web (onhashchange is going to be very important in terms of Web 2.0 apps interacting with browser chrome, for example).


Who works for? (Answer: Microsoft) And is in charge of (Answer: IE development)

Go to the w3.org->about and see if Microsoft is a paying, full standing member. Then see if you can find Chris Wilson's name on that list.


Again you completely miss my point. The role of a chair is completely uninfluenced by their employer. I can think of no counter-example within the HTML WG of this.


Again you are completely missing the point.
Who had to rewrite their engine because it was so far behind everyone else? The IE team. Who will still be far behind in CSS3 support when it comes out? The IE team. (See my links below)

Guess what? Netscape had to rewrite their engine too. IE's engine was only gradually rewritten from its Mosaic based origins. KHTML was rewritten in 1999. Why is Trident only now getting totally rewritten? Partly due to MS upper-management scrapping development of it for years, but also because it was in nowhere near as bad state as the other engines were.

You've also completely missed my point about CSS3 (which will in all likelihood never "come out" per-se, but rather be gradually published as CR as modules), which is that IE is now in a far better place to implement CSS3 than anything else. They're going to have a far easier time than any other browser vendor at implementing it.


Again, IE8 will be where other browsers were a year ago or more ago when it comes out in January, if it doesn't get delayed yet again.

This seems to go completely against your argument that it is eleven years out of date. By that statement, all other browsers were ten years out of date a year ago. It also isn't due out in January — there isn't even an RC yet! The only comment about release that has been made is that a RC is due 1Q 2009.


Though MS co-chairs the HTML5 spec, there are major issues with them getting things done. I have not followed the fight in a while but, last I heard, Wilson isn't participating as he should, then comes in late trying to undo all the work that was accomplished.

I fail to see this. The only issue to which I can think you might be referring about undoing work was several months ago, and was a joint decision by both chairs (and by this argument the other chair's employee, W3C, is just as evil) to call consensus. As for more generally participating, nobody from MS has been particularly active on the mailing list (a stark contrast to www-style where is seems at least half the emails are from the IE team trying to get CSS 2.1 less ambiguous so they can implement it without guesswork; but the mailing list fairly often descends to long pointless flamewars, the matter on which consensus was called, @headers, has be especially contentious, and there are plenty of times when virtually no browser manufacturer is participating), though Chris has been chairing every other telecon (Mike(tm) Smith, the other chair, chairing the others), as well as posting on the mailing list on a number of things that are being fixed in IE8 (some of which have previously been undefined).

The IE team really are trying to improve standards support — if you have any realistic idea of how they can improve it quicker I'm sure they'd be happy to hear.

drhowarddrfine
12-16-2008, 06:20 PM
Bottom Line: FF is gaining support, as it should.. it's a good browser. However, from a USER standpoint, at the very least, so is IE.Not true at all. IE has lost 25% market share over the last 3 years; almost every month. See Netapps, CNET, ArsTechnica, TechCrunch, ComputerWorld, Lifehacker, ITWorld, etc.

Apostropartheid
12-16-2008, 06:29 PM
Not true at all. IE has lost 25% market share over the last 3 years; almost every month. See Netapps, CNET, ArsTechnica, TechCrunch, ComputerWorld, Lifehacker, ITWorld, etc.
I think his points were separate. More like:
Firefox has gained support.
Firefox is a good browser.
From some users' standpoint, IE is a good browser.

drhowarddrfine
12-16-2008, 06:46 PM
Ah yes, DOM. From memory what they don't support of DOM isn't really much of an issue in the real world.See my link above for testing browsers to see what is not supported.


I never argued that it didn't fail that part of the test. I was arguing that having no support is better than having broken support.We've been working around IEs broken CSS support for years.
As for any Acid3's connection to standards compliance, nothing except an exhaustive test suite can make anywhere near a rough statement of thinking that an implementation is compliantLet's not get too much into the math, shall we? If it works in practical situations, it works.

When someone speaks of David Baron, and the like, I try and see if they have a web site. You do and I see you follow Anne and use HTML5 there. I just don't have time to play with it but have an acquaintence who does also.


Again you completely miss my point. The role of a chair is completely uninfluenced by their employer. I can think of no counter-example within the HTML WG of this.
If you follow the mailing list, zcorpan (forgot his real name) represents Opera and I think Baron is there. It costs tens of thousands of dollars to join the W3C so I'm sure they are representing the company. But perhaps I still miss your point.


Guess what? Netscape had to rewrite their engine too. IE's engine was only gradually rewritten from its Mosaic based origins. KHTML was rewritten in 1999. Why is Trident only now getting totally rewritten? Partly due to MS upper-management scrapping development of it for years, but also because it was in nowhere near as bad state as the other engines were.
I know that and I said the same as your last sentence.


You've also completely missed my point about CSS3 (which will in all likelihood never "come out" per-se, but rather be gradually published as CR as modules), which is that IE is now in a far better place to implement CSS3 than anything else. They're going to have a far easier time than any other browser vendor at implementing it.See my link below that shows current implementations of CSS3. Whether the other browsers get stalled at some point, like you I have no way of knowing, but I'd be surprised if Webkit or Opera had any problems.


This seems to go completely against your argument that it is eleven years out of date. By that statementThere will be improvements in IE8, some of which aren't in the latest beta yet. Some improvements which MS is touting have long been available in other browsers.
It also isn't due out in January — there isn't even an RC yet! The only comment about release that has been made is that a RC is due 1Q 2009.Yes. Mixed it up with Chrome which was to come out of beta in January but that's already happened.

I fail to see this.I must have been distracted. The arguments were about getting javascript done, not html5.

The IE team really are trying to improve standards support — if you have any realistic idea of how they can improve it quicker I'm sure they'd be happy to hear.They dug their own hole.

whizard
12-17-2008, 05:33 AM
Yes, that's what I meant above. Sorry it wasn't clear.

Dan

Fou-Lu
12-25-2008, 08:47 AM
I haven't read through these posts (so sorry if I'm repeating someone else).
Anyway, these statistics are always rubbish. If I had to take a real stab at it I'd say that IE takes somewhere between 60 - 80% of the market (with a more accurate choice of between 73-77%). This is mainly because the majority of users do not realize there are other (IMO better) browsers available for use. These stats are based off of sites that record them, and are target dependent. W3schools, codingforums, and other similar programming, coding, design and IT type sites for example will probably relay a much higher Firefox usage than other sites (I'm guessing between 40 - 70%, emphasis on between 50-60% ranges). This is simply due to developers starting from firefox and working back to IE for design and interactivity; firefox is well... better at these than IE is.
Does this mean IE sucks? No, not at all, its just different and the design challange is quite fine to undertake a FF / IE site with a single stylesheet.
One of those things that really rubs the the wrong way is sites that try to deny access for specific browsers. Cutting IE out will eliminate most of you're users. Denying FF or Opera will really rub programmers (which is bad for you). Better hope that doesn't get digged.

drhowarddrfine
12-25-2008, 05:27 PM
Anyway, these statistics are always rubbish.But they are better than a wild guess. And if you look at all of them together, they show the same trend. Not all the stat sites are developer related, such as itix or netapps.

This is simply due to developers starting from firefox and working back to IE for design and interactivity; firefox is well... better at these than IE is.
Does this mean IE sucks? No, not at all, its just different and the design challange is quite fine to undertake a FF / IE site with a single stylesheet.Let's see. Firefox is better at this and creating one stylesheet for both is a challenge but that doesn't say anything about how good IE is? Sure it does. IEs miserable performance with web standards is known all over, verifiable and provable. No one can say that IE comes close to web standards performance compared to any other browser. Not even Microsoft claims this.

One of those things that really rubs the the wrong way is sites that try to deny access for specific browsers.It's just plain stupid.
Cutting IE out will eliminate most of you're users.Not always most. In Europe and parts of Asia, only half for non-developer sites.
Denying FF or Opera will really rub programmers (which is bad for you). Better hope that doesn't get digged.Worldwide, one out of every four to five surfers do not use IE.

crystallayden
12-27-2008, 04:08 PM
Not so surprised although I am included to IE loyal user. FF is faster and more user friendly than IE.

Soraiya
12-31-2008, 05:42 AM
I love FFox. tried Chrome, hated it! never liked IE, ever

sori
http://soraiya.com/

whatadeals
12-31-2008, 06:44 AM
i really love firefox , its fast and come with lot of futures (add-ons)
too bad for IE

DELOCH
01-29-2009, 06:55 AM
I believe it is because of the following reasons:

1. Genuine checks disallow download of new IE(which has layout which i wanna barf on compared to IE6)
2. IE6 is insecure as hell...
3. Firefox is free and customizable and with noscript addon makes a very secure browsing.

Generally... IE6 is a nice fast browser... if it was a bit more secure i'd use it...

primefalcon
01-29-2009, 10:10 AM
Plus regardless of what some people think Linux especialy Ubuntu is becoming a lot mroe widely accepted on the desktop

and well 2 things right there... Firefox is the default browser and you can't install i.e on it



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