Web Developers Welcome IE 9 with Overwhelming Joy
Ask any seasoned web developer what he or she thinks of Internet Explorer and you’ll likely be in for a tortuous venting of tears and endless frustrations.
Microsoft Launches IE 9
Microsoft’s one-year effort developing Internet Explorer 9 has come to fruition as it finally released the browser last night at 9 pm PST, March 14, 2011.
After years of playing catch-up in the browser wars (IE 6 = nightmare, IE 7= stopgap, IE 8=security hole) Internet Explorer 8 — which offered practically no support for new Web innovations — is being touted as a browser that’s not only as good but “the most modern browser there is.”
Rather than describe the new features, which for the most part have already been introduced by Firefox, Chrome and Safari, this article will focus on what IE 9 means to the Web development industry in general.
Microsoft’s main claim through IE9‘s development has been focused on standards compliance as prescribed by W3C. Any Web designer can testify to the grueling task of testing his/her latest Web design on multiple browsers, then tweaking it endlessly so that it actually looks the same (or somewhat similar) in every major browser. During this process, IE is inevitably the browser that causes one to pull one’s hair out in a mad, shrieking rage of utter contempt for all things Internet Explorer. For this reason, standards compliance is the best weapon Web developers can wield against buggy, non-standard-compliant browsers such as Internet Explorer.
Miraculously however, Microsoft has taken leaps and bounds toward developing IE9 into a standards-compliant browser. This means not only making sure the browser matches the latest browser coding innovations but that the requirements themselves are clear and universally accepted in the development community.
Internet Explorer 9 supports HTML 5 features such as plug-in-free video and audio, as well as several other enhancements provided by CSS 3. This improvment makes the browser much more attractive to developers.
Aside from the many new improvements introduced Microsoft allegedly recommends that “all users to upgrade to the new version of the browser in order to be immediately protected against potential risk,” of security holes in IE 8.