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Microsoft Drops Hints on IE8 309

Posted by samzenpus
from the new-and-improved dept.
benuski writes "Lost in the hype about Microsoft's new Siverlight platform, there has been some information surfacing about IE8. It will include improvements in RSS, CSS, and AJAX support, and will follow Firefox 3 in supporting microformats. Also, the developers are going to try and improve UI customization, which is one of the main criticisms of IE7."
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Microsoft Drops Hints on IE8

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  • by therufus (677843) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:08PM (#18966723)
    Patches are probably out already. I'm sure there are some hackers who have gotten code and already written spyware for it.
  • by r_jensen11 (598210) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:08PM (#18966729)
    I understand why they wish to compare it to Firefox, but there are other browsers out there. Now, I'm not saying that they should go and compare it to Links, Lynx, or Netscape, but how about another browser like Opera?
    • by Kryptonian Jor-El (970056) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:11PM (#18966775)
      Firefox is a widely used browser and is the biggest competition to IE. No offense to opera, but its not as strong or as popular as firefox.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward
        I use opera to browse pr0n.

        It's got a nice zooOOM feature.
      • by jrieth50 (846378) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @02:43AM (#18968795)
        I've seen Firefox punch through a concrete wall. Men have emptied entire clips at it and hit nothing but air, yet its strength and its popularity are still based in a world that is built on rules. Because of that, they will never be as strong or as fast as Opera can be.
    • by Endo13 (1000782) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:13PM (#18966805)
      Because Firefox is currently the only other browser for Windows that represents real competition? Opera is nice and all, but it's not used by nearly enough people to be a real threat... yet.

      Also, Firefox has a look and feel a lot more like IE than Opera does. I'm not exactly sure in how many ways this fits in, but I know it makes it easier for people familiar with IE to switch to Firefox, and perhaps it also makes Firefox and IE easier to compare than say IE and Opera.
      • by jonadab (583620) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:24PM (#18967403) Homepage Journal
        > Opera is nice and all, but it's not used by nearly enough people to be a real threat... yet.

        I don't know that it ever will be, but I also don't know that it needs to be. Opera has never been aimed at the "everybody and their mother" market segment. I don't think that was even a goal for them.

        Opera has consistently been, since the mid nineties, on the dividing line between the major browsers and the minor browsers -- always having a smaller market share than second place, but always rather larger than any of the obscure players. Every webmaster who can name more than three browsers knows about Opera, and everyone who's at all serious about supporting "all the major browsers" tests in Opera at least a little. I don't see any reason to expect any of that to change.

        Is it going to take over the world and force IE and Gecko into second and third place? No. But it's not going away, either. It's an _alternative_ browser for a minority of users. It occupies that role by design, and always has.

        The reason they're not comparing rumors about upcoming IE features to information about upcoming Opera features is because IE8 isn't aiming to compete with Opera. Microsoft is not bothered by Opera. Opera is a very benign competitor for them, and fairly predictable. They understand its place in things, and it doesn't scare them.

        Firefox is another thing. It came, from Microsoft's perspective, out of nowhere. Mozilla was doing what it had always done, occupying the role it had occupied for several years, and then whammo, over the course of a few months there was this Firefox thing, and ordinary users, not just web geeks, had heard about it, tried it out, and were using it. In droves. Its market share broke (by some measures anyway) into double digits and threatened to continue climbing. The release of IE7 was a direct response to that threat.

        Further, the really scary thing about Firefox, from Microsoft's perspective, is not just that it breaks up their monopoly on the web, but more importantly that it's open source, and if too many users -- ordinary end users, not IT geeks -- start using and liking open source software, that could have implications beyond just the web browser market. I mean, if an open source web browser became the cool thing everyone had to use, then another open source application (an office suite, for example) could potentially do the same, and *that* outcome could directly cost Microsoft a lot of money. This isn't so much of an issue with Opera.

        That is why IE8 rumors get compared to Firefox development information, and not Opera. It isn't because Firefox is better than Opera (though I do personally prefer it), but rather because Firefox is, in Microsoft's view, the primary competition IE must beat.
        • I'm using both browsers and although Opera starts up faster (even faster than both, my old Mozilla Firebird 0.7 or Mozilla 0.9.x I still have installed) and generally is less of a resource hog I still prefer to use Firefox. Even though I need to restart it due to the memory leak problem (which is mitigated by the built in session manager). Why? One word: customization. If I can not get plug-ins or a Greasemonkey script to do what I want I still can try to delve into the code and "fix" stuff myself.

          As a n
    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:22PM (#18966889)
      They'd be insane to compare it to lynx -- I get better CSS compliance out of that thing than I do with IE.

      -1 Troll, +1 Inciteful?
  • UI customization? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GIL_Dude (850471) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:09PM (#18966737) Homepage
    UI Customization is one of the main criticisms of IE? Darn, I guess I read /. too much. For some reason I was under the impression that the criticisms were:

    1) Security (or lack thereof)
    2) ActiveX
    3) The fact that it came from Microsoft
    4-50 other things
    51) UI Customization or skinning or whatever useless thing that is

    Seriously, if that is one of the main criticism, then no wonder IE is the dominant browser on the planet (which I say tongue-in-cheek as I type this in Firefox so I have spell checking).
  • Ars Link Broken (Score:5, Informative)

    by anaesthetica (596507) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:09PM (#18966741) Homepage Journal
  • Information? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by EmbeddedJanitor (597831) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:09PM (#18966747)
    Surely at this stage it is just hype. With MS you can only consider something to be information when it has been shipping for a few versions. Most announcements from MS have a lot of hype about fancy features that don't make the cut.
    • I can't believe this comment was modded down when history repeatedly shows Microsoft over promising and under delivering.

      IE7 and Vista are two examples that were loaded with desirable features when they were vaporware.

    • a lot of hype about fancy features that don't make the cut

      Sort of like how the show cars that look terrific at first but then the actual production vehicle ends up having warts, bad hair and herpes?
  • Extensions (Score:5, Insightful)

    by The Bungi (221687) <thebungi@gmail.com> on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:10PM (#18966763) Homepage
    Seriously, the only reason I dropped IE and went to Firefox is the extensions (nee add-ins). I live with the almost glacial speed of Firefox and it annoying quirks just because of that one thing. And specifically, AdBlock. Nothing else. The others are nice, but AdBlock is the reason I started enjoying the internet more.

    Until Microsoft figures out a way for people to create extensions easily, without having to know C++ and COM/ActiveX, they're not going to get people like me back. I don't care about tabs. I don't care about skins. I don't care about aggregators or fancy micro-whatevers. I don't care about security (in the sense that I was secure enough with IE since my IQ is above that of a jellyfish). Without the extensions and the community that needs to build behind them, it's a no-go for me at least. Holy shit, it's 2007 and I still don't have an easy way to turn off Flash on demand. Really, WTF?

    • Re:Extensions (Score:5, Insightful)

      by anaesthetica (596507) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:19PM (#18966861) Homepage Journal
      Agreed, giving the end user the ability to control what content they are subjected to is really the deal-maker/breaker for me. I just can't use a browser riddled with ads anymore. Unless I can find an extension or plugin allowing me to block ad content (PithHelmet for Safari, CamiTools for Camino, AdBlock Plus for Firefox, OmniWeb's built-in blocker) I'm just not going to be able to stomach it.

      The problem IE faces is the level to which it is beholden to other companies that rely on it to not allow end users to block their content. If IE were to introduce an AdBlock-type ability into IE they would get their pants sued off by every one of their competitors. Just look at Google--it's completely ad-dependent, and yet, with AdBlock the end user will never have to see "ads by google" ever again. In one fell swoop, leveraging their 85%+ marketshare Microsoft could destroy Google's revenue source. As a monopolist, they can never fix their inability to offer an AdBlocking solution.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by The Bungi (221687)
        They could ship one disabled by default. I mean, I really don't care a rat's ass about all the special rules people dream up that supposedly apply to Microsoft because they are a monopoly. Ship it and let the user decide. I like my monopolies better when they give me choices.

        Seriously, Firefox is nice and all but 700MB for three tabs is just a little extreme. I'd jump back to IE in a heartbeat if they gave me AdBlock or an equivalent thereof. Hell, I'll settle for FlashBlock or something like that to begi

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Nasarius (593729)
          I just counted: I have 31 tabs open (yeah, it's a mess), and my memory usage is 169MB. I have nine extensions installed, including AdBlock Plus, Greasemonkey, DownThemAll. So...bullshit.
          • Re:Extensions (Score:4, Interesting)

            by EvanED (569694) <evaned@ g m a i l.com> on Thursday May 03, 2007 @01:59AM (#18968567)
            This is something that some people have problems with and others don't it seems. I'm not sure what makes the difference, but I certainly can back up his claims [slashdot.org].

            I would guess it's probably an extension that's causing this, but I'm not sure; I only have a few installed and enabled now.

            (I just restarted FF a couple times so now it's only at 55 MB with 2 tabs, but when I posted that comment above I was over 400 MB of mem usage (with a VM size over 900 MB) with 10 tabs.

            So he's probably not making that up.
      • by flacco (324089) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:02PM (#18967231)
        run the privoxy [privoxy.org] proxy and make it the proxy server for all your browsers. it does ad filtering at the proxy level.

        wait a fucking minute. did i just make IE more attractive?

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by sulfur (1008327)
          Although you can do filtering at the proxy level, with this approach you can't reclaim valuable screen real estate. You will have large gaps and websites will generally look ugly. Been there, tried to block ads with squid - AdBlock is just much easier and more effective.
      • by Repton (60818)

        It wouldn't just destroy Google's revenue source -- it would destroy the revenue sources of every other advertising-supported web site. To figure out if that would affect you, use the following algorithm:

        1. Make a list of all the websites you visit.
        2. Remove those websites you give money to (through a subscription, or through buying their stuff).
      • My Adblock policy (Score:4, Interesting)

        by SIGBUS (8236) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:37PM (#18967507) Homepage
        By default, I let ads through. However, the instant $AD_NETWORK serves up an abusive ad, such as a fake dialog box, or circumventing Firefox's popup blocker, or playing audio by default, or anything else obnoxious (see also: Intellitxt, Rovion), said network goes into my blocklist. Needless to say, blocking the bad guys makes the browsing experience a whole lot nicer.

        Google ads don't really bother me - they're text ads, rasy enough to ignore.
    • Re:Extensions (Score:5, Informative)

      by Mortlath (780961) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:39PM (#18967035)
      After a simple search, I found plenty of ad blocking extensions for IE:

      • http://www.3bsoftware.com/products/adblocker.asp
      • http://www.adscleaner.com/
      • http://shareme.com/download/ads-filter.html
      • ...

      It seems to me that only 1 enterprising individual needs to make a free one for IE. (there might already be one. I didn't do a through search)

      Until Microsoft figures out a way for people to create extensions easily, without having to know C++ and COM/ActiveX, they're not going to get people like me back.

      Is C++ and COM/ActiveX so hard to use?

      • Re:Extensions (Score:4, Insightful)

        by ozmanjusri (601766) <aussie_bob@NOsPam.hotmail.com> on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:18PM (#18967359) Journal
        After a simple search, I found plenty of ad blocking extensions for IE:

        Now your only remaining problem is to work out which one of those is actually spyware which will hijack your browser, install half a dozen trojans and send every password you use to a crime syndicate in Miami.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by hkgroove (791170)

        Is C++ and COM/ActiveX so hard to use?

        Not for those with a clue, but what are you more likely to trust? Some random compiled ActiveX plugin for IE or something that appears on Mozilla.org and has been verified?

        Until there's a huge community pushing quality plugins / addons for IE that are easy to install and customize (for those with experience) IE is going to remain way behind.

        Those with a lot of experience / know-how can further customize their Firefox extensions since they're mostly written in Jav

      • by The Bungi (221687)
        Thanks. I've tried AdBlocker and another one. They are inflexible and generally suck. I tried Proxomitron for a while, but that's a pain in the ass.

        To be clear, I don't care that they cost money. That's not the point. I donated $100 to Mozilla before they started pulling in the millions from Google. I don't have a problem buying software. But it needs to work. AdBlock just works.

        Is C++ and COM/ActiveX so hard to use?

        Not really (not to me at least), but that's not the point. Whatever extension system M

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Spy Hunter (317220)

        Is C++ and COM/ActiveX so hard to use?

        Um... yes, if you want to do it properly, i.e. without race conditions or deadlocks (apartment model threading... [shudder]), memory leaks, or buffer overflows. COM/ActiveX is a nightmare that Microsoft invented .NET to get away from. (what's that function to convert from BSTR to CString again? Or to TCHAR* or wait I need LPTSTR or WCHAR* or plain char* or how about std::string or... argh!) Compare to Firefox, where your extension is likely written entirely in Javas

    • by DogDude (805747)
      Bingo. Same here. Firefox is slow and buggy, but you're right. Adblock is why I am putting up with it. I didn't realize why I was still using it until you said so.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Just Some Guy (3352)

      I don't care about security (in the sense that I was secure enough with IE since my IQ is above that of a jellyfish).

      Oh yeah? At what IQ level do people automatically detect and avoid websites that can take over IE with an animated mouse cursor?

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by razvi_98 (1008345)
      Talking about flash, just wait till the microsoft competing format is launched. Then IE will get a "turn off Flash" feature and will be enabled at install.
  • by weighn (578357) <weighn.gmail@com> on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:14PM (#18966809) Homepage

    Also, the developers are going to try and improve UI customization, which is one of the main criticisms of IE7.
    aw, come on. where's the preemptive UI going?
    I want to see "it looks like you're typing an email" and animated puppies running off into the distance when I turn off animations ...
  • by SocialEngineer (673690) <invertedpanda@g[ ]l.com ['mai' in gap]> on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:20PM (#18966871) Homepage

    I want a little more attention paid to standards. What is the point of developing standards compliant, accessible websites if the most used browser in the market screws it up without crappy hacks? Oh, wait.. Notgetting sued [456bereastreet.com] is a pretty good reason, I guess. Still, the overhead IE creates for web developers (especially ones in areas with a low budget for design work) tends to make things cost much more than they should for the client.

    We'll probably just see them get a little above 60% compliance on this round, though. Apathy is great, isn't it?

    • by AKAImBatman (238306) * <akaimbatmanNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:30PM (#18966955) Homepage Journal

      I want a little more attention paid to standards.

      Amen. I want to see DOM 2 support (not just their crappy 1.0 support from 1998), CSS that works, caching that actually works, Canvas (ok, so it's not a W3C standard; but IE is the only one missing it), SVG, a Javascript debugger that doesn't suck, so on and so forth.
      • by SleepyHappyDoc (813919) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:29PM (#18967435)
        (ok, so it's not a W3C standard; but IE is the only one missing it)

        Let me see if I got this...you want Microsoft to pay attention to standards, but only the ones other browsers don't ignore? That's a standard right there...a double standard.
        • by @madeus (24818)
          In what way are other browsers, like Firefox, Safari, and Opera 'ignoring' another standard by implimenting canvas support? Canvas [whatwg.org] support is a widely support standard, Firefox, Safari and Opera both impliment it, Microsoft have something *similar* but of course it's not the same.

          This is pretty typical, and a situation that arises a lot even when it's with a W3C standard - things like the ECMA script standard leave specifics untermined, and the other major browser developers have implimented complimentary s
          • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

            Well, I'm assuming that the lack of a W3C standard for Canvas means that the W3C standard for that is to omit support for it. The original poster I was responding to, almost in the same breath, berated Microsoft for not complying with W3C standards and requested that they comply with a non-W3C one. I don't know much about WHATWG or Canvas, but you can't have your cake and eat it too. Either Microsoft will comply with all the W3C standards or they won't at all, or they'll comply with some. You can't have
            • by Bogtha (906264) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @03:08AM (#18968975)

              berated Microsoft for not complying with W3C standards and requested that they comply with a non-W3C one.

              And what is wrong with that? The W3C aren't responsible for JPEG, that was standardised by ISO. Does that mean that web browsers shouldn't implement JPEG?

              You are talking like there is a wall between the W3C and the rest of the world, where implementing a non-W3C technology means that you must inevitably throw away W3C stuff. This is nonsensical. You can implement W3C specifications and non-W3C specifications simultaneously just fine,and this has been the norm for as long as the W3C has existed.

              I don't think it's fair to hold IE to impossible expectations.

              Huh? You are talking about something that the OP already pointed out was already implemented by the other browsers. How is keeping up with everybody else an impossible expectation?

    • by XeRXeS-TCN (788834) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:38PM (#18967025)
      If only I had mod points.. I couldn't agree more. It just seems every time there's information about a new version of IE in the works, they say "We're going to increase CSS compatibility!" and that has the geek crowd starting in with the wishful thinking, talking about how wonderful it would be if they adhered correctly to standards or fully implemented CSS. Then the thing finally comes out and we're all bitterly disappointed as we were foolish enough to hope for a proper standards implementation and all we get is excuses from apologists claiming that it's far better than it used to be... to quote Jack Black in the Pick of Destiny,

      "We were so awesome!"
      "Yeah, it was awesome... compared to BULLSHIT!"
    • by sexyrexy (793497)
      One could argue that the overhead IE creates for developers is a good thing for really, really good web developers - it increases billable hours threefold and makes those of us talented and experienced enough to write solid code for IE *AND* all other platforms and push our less-able competitors out of the high-paying market. I know, all that blah blah about a healthy business and technology ecosystem and everybody wins. But seriously, who fucking cares? I make plenty of money because Microsoft makes it imp
  • by weighn (578357) <weighn.gmail@com> on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:31PM (#18966963) Homepage
    preamble: this may sound like some OSS fanboi troll-rant, but it is not (check my other comments).

    This is real and (IMHO) the computing experience for many users right-now.

    So are MS trying to pull back users who have turned to an alternative browser, or they are desperately trying to plug the drip drip drip of users who still haven't moved?

    Either way they will have to make a hyperspace leap to get ahead of the curve.

    I began using FF at something like v0.83 and its now mature, secure and stable.

    After occasionally dipping the big toe into linux over the past 5-6 years (Redhat 7.3; Fedora 3, 4, 5), just this week I installed ubuntu 7.04 and have fallen in love with it. Restored a ghost backup of XP to a partition and have booted into it just once.

    IE's CSS hassles should have been fixed years ago - MS really needs to do more to stop the millions of users like me that are dabbling and finding that OSS is more than just a viable alternative.

    • by KWTm (808824) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:59PM (#18967211) Journal
      Will people ever go back to IE once they've switched to Firefox? Maybe, but it might be a good thing.

      Firefox lit a firecracker under the butts of Microsoft (who actually disbanded the IE team after IE6 --can you believe it?), and made them scramble to build a web browser that was a first in the world of Microsoft: it was standards compliant. Okay, actually, it wasn't, but it was a heck of a lot more so than the old IE, and for the first time MS actually paid attention to Web standards compliance. Whatever happens after that, we can thank Firefox for this historic watershed; even if people switch back to IE, it won't be to IE 6, and web page authors will realize that Microsoft doesn't necessarily dictate the standards.

      In the same way, though, Firefox can't afford to be complacent. Microsoft has a long history of coming from behind and overtaking. There are quite a few ways in which Firefox could be improved, and if MS makes this improved browser IE8, then I can very well envision people switching back.

      I think the main thing Firefox needs to do is manage its extensions. There was an interview on Slashdot in which one of the developers said that there was no need for the Mozilla Foundation to vet and officially support extensions, which I think flies in the face of common sense. The MozFound needs to pick three or four extensions and make sure they work --which would not be hard to do since they work now-- but officially make it part of Firefox. These extensions are: Adblock [Plus], NoScript, ... well, I'll let you fill in the rest so I don't start any flame wars. Then when testing happens, they have to include these extensions.

      Firefox could do with a few other improvements, and I'm sure other posters will happily list them, but the point is: Microsoft is fully capable of overtaking Firefox again. This is a good thing only if it spurs Firefox to greater heights. I don't want IE to actually end up overtaking Firefox, because I want the dominant browser on the Web to be a cross-platform one.
      • Adblock seems to be a big attraction for using FF and there is no way in Hades that MS would put anything like that in IE. Ditto for FF 'officially supporting' it.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      I began using FF at something like v0.83 and its now mature, secure and stable.

      Now by stable, do you mean that the manner in which it leaks memory and ultimately crashes is well characterized and predictable? Firefox on mac for me is nearly unusable. Sadly, safari is only slightly better. On my linux machine, it's a bit better but still a pig. Don't know about Windows.

      • by jZnat (793348) *
        The situation on Linux is a bit different due to the aggressive caching in Linux and how it will try to use all the available RAM you have (unused RAM is wasted RAM, remember that). Also, viewing process statistics will generally show memory usage for programs by including memory used from shared libraries (which are only used once if you have them open in more than a single instance) and from cached files. And there's the fact that Linux makes better use of swap than Windows, so having full RAM all the t
      • by pavera (320634)
        I use FF on windows, linux and OS X all day every day. I haven't had it crash since somewhere around 1.5 beta.

        Right now, FF is using 64MB of ram, its been on all day, it has 8 tabs open, today it has ranged from 1 tab to more than 20... that is on OS X.

        FF uses just as much RAM as IE doing similar workloads. Obviously that can only be tested on windows, but i have done extensive bookmarking on > 100PCs.

  • by RiskyChris (999242) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:35PM (#18966997)
    Confirming upgraded support for CSS, eh? This is almost as exciting as waiting for WinFS!
  • by IGnatius T Foobar (4328) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:41PM (#18967055) Homepage Journal
    Microsoft announced a few major partners who were going to adopt Silverlight. I wonder, however, whether any of those were "wins" of content providers who were previously using Flash video ... or if they were merely content providers who were already using Windows Media and are merely going to take advantage of an easier way to distribute it.

    Anyone know?
  • Hmm... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by imamac (1083405) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:46PM (#18967081)
    "It will include improvements in RSS, CSS, and AJAX support, and will follow Firefox 3 in supporting microformats." So it will simply copy features already in most other browsers. These "improvements" are simply things which should already be in IE7. (Maybe with the exception of microformats.) Still, it's just MS trying to play catchup, but by the time IE8 is released, Firefox, Safari, and Opera will have moved on to bigger and better things.
  • by cgenman (325138) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:51PM (#18967131) Homepage
    Microsoft representative: "You know that really nifty stuff the Firefox team said they're working on? Um... Yeah, we're doing all that too. And better. And with a pony. ...Ok, we lied about the pony."

    • by pallmall1 (882819)

      Ok, we lied about the pony.
      I'm not so sure about that. With all the horseshit spread by microsoft, there's got to be a pony somewhere.
  • by boxlight (928484) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:53PM (#18967145)
    Competition is good. Microsoft would never improve IE unless Firefox was trying to out-do them. Similarly, they'd never improve Windows if it wasn't for Mac OS X, and they would never improve their server products if it wasn't for Linux.

    If Microsoft had been broken into a variety of little companies like the judge wanted 10 years ago, we'd all have much better products now because of the resulting competition.

    Now it's time for Firefox (or Apple) to truly think out of the box and blow us all away with the next big thing. What's the next KILLER APP? We all know Microsoft won't do it first.

    boxlight

  • by eebra82 (907996) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @10:55PM (#18967173) Homepage
    It will include improvements in RSS, CSS, and AJAX support, and will follow Firefox 3 in supporting microformats.

    I generally think Microsoft provides solid products and I rarely stumble upon problems with aged products. Look at Office, Windows XP and other operating systems, that are doing just fine.

    Internet Explorer is one of the few big mistakes Microsoft has had. IE4 knocked out Netscape and after that, we have seen little and rather futile competition, with Opera being the exception. But even with the release of Firefox, Microsoft has been utterly ignorant. They don't care about perfecting the CSS support and I have little hopes for IE8 after seeing IE7. Sure, it is far better but why is it so damn hard to follow standards?

    In my opinion, Microsoft only needs to follow the standards to regain some trust from its lost users and it should have done so with IE7 as it had several years to do what Mozilla did.
    • I generally think Microsoft provides solid products and I rarely stumble upon problems with aged products.

      Regardless of age, proprietary software doesn't respect my freedom to be run it, inspect it, share it, or modify it. I don't inspect or modify most of my software but I trust others to do this work. Therefore I need to make sure they too have these freedoms so that I may benefit from their work. Thus, I need to make sure my software is free (presently that means running a free software OS with

  • How about the ridiculously unintuitive location of history in IE 7? You wouldn't believe how many customers who have updated to IE7 or use Vista ask me where the history icon went...
  • It will include improvements in... AJAX support
    Last I checked, IE's XMLHTTPRequest object (or whatever they called the ActiveX object in IE6) sends requests to the server and receives responses back just fine. What noticeable improvements do they plan on making, or are they just falling into the trap of using "AJAX" to mean any JavaScript/DHTML?
  • Too much crap (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Quiet_Desperation (858215) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:09PM (#18967293)
    Let's revert back to HTML 1.0 and be done with it. :)

    I'm generally rabidly anti-Luddite, but the web seems so broken sometimes.

    Let's start over and make content matter. Please?

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      There isn't an 'HTML 1.0'. The first standardized version HTML was HTML 2.0, way back in 1995.

      If you want people to simply 'get on with it', then HTML 4.01 Transitional is probably what you want, since it includes depreciated elements as well as all the new stuff.

      You may also want a 'versionless internet', which is exactly what the WHATWG are trying to make happen with their (X)HTML5 proposal.

      Additionally, I would recommend that new pages be made according to the HTML 4.01 Strict specifications, and my own
    • by jZnat (793348) *
      HTML 1.0 was "whatever the web browser supports"; that is, there was no official standard for 1.0. I'd rather not repeat those days again...
  • I don't know if people want "customization" as much as they don't want the god awful interface MS decided to slap on IE 7. When compared to Firefox or Safari, that cluttered thing is a practically crime against humanity. Seriously, I think I've seen it try to execute the elderly by forcing them to use tabs.
  • Installed IE7 on my laptop which I rarely use, man I'm glad I didn't install it on my main machine, the thing is terribly slow and the interface is just aweful. IE6 and Firefox simply blow it out of the water. After seeing the crap MS puts out year after year, its a real surprise they are still a monopoly.
  • Oi MS! (Score:3, Funny)

    by GFree (853379) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:34PM (#18967485)
    You better add IE support for AmigaOS you bastards!
  • IE8: Who Cares? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Dracos (107777) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @11:34PM (#18967495)

    By the time the first betas are out, MS will have announced that IE8 is Vista only, and given the amount of time they took to produce IE7 (a token effort at best), it'll probably require Vista SP1 to function fully. Another year of development means another 18 to 24 months, probably.

    If they want to impress web developers (who are the catalyst for people moving away from IE), they have to stop paying lip service to web standards. Until then, developers will continue to do everything they can to save themselves wasted time and effort dealing with IE, by eroding IE's market share.

    As a designer/developer, I don't really give a damn about RSS improvements. This is merely something they can use to bloat a bullet list of improved features. Fixes to CSS, DOM, events, floats, javascript, and making IE into a worthwhile developer's tool would be much more appreciated. And get rid of hasLayout while you're at it.

  • improvements in RSS, CSS, and AJAX

    Sh*t. "Improvements"? Didn't we do this a decade ago?
  • by slapout (93640) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @12:11AM (#18967801)
    How about making the installer work first. I just spent an hour trying to install IE 7 on my dad's computer. It still isn't installed.

    Hmmm...maybe his anti-virus program really does work that well...
  • by Vskye (9079) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @12:25AM (#18967923)
    When Microsoft pushed this update, it plain and outright broke a lot of our customers ability to even surf on the web. It was random for sure. I just kind of boil it down to MS just not getting it. Like releasing what I would consider a alpha release. They could ping out and get info back, etc. Just a support nightmare for a while, and yep.. we pointed them to MS support to fix their crap software, while recommending Firefox.
     
    I can imagine what a ie8 release will bring... more headaches.
  • by fellip_nectar (777092) on Thursday May 03, 2007 @04:58AM (#18969561)
    ...XP incompatibility.

Those who do things in a noble spirit of self-sacrifice are to be avoided at all costs. -- N. Alexander.

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