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IE 5.5 Beats IE6 and IE7 On Acid 3 308

Posted by kdawson
from the acid-reflux dept.
Steven Noonan sends us to a page where he is collecting and updating results for various browsers on the newly released Acid 3 test. No browser yet scores 100 on this test. (We discussed Acid 3 when it came out.) He writes, "It's not surprising that Internet Explorer is losing to every other modern browser, but how did IE 5.5 beat IE 6.0 and 7.0?" All of the IE versions score below 20 on Acid 3.
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IE 5.5 Beats IE6 and IE7 On Acid 3

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  • IE6 and IE7 On Acid
    IE's recreational drug use would explain a lot...
  • Very simple (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Jafafa Hots (580169)
    Microsoft doesn't WANT IE to be compatible. Have the most popular browser and have it not be compatible, and you force everyone to be compatible with YOU - and the competitors who are "standards" compatible are thereby not compatible with what most people was used to, etc.

    If you can't own the internet, this is the next best thing.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by dedazo (737510)
      And they are bringing IE8 into compliance because...?
      • The browser war was so over years ago. The only reason why IE7 is still standing is because corporate apps are forced to support it as M$ has far more corporate influence than mozilla org.
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by zippthorne (748122)
          Look, we were all rooting for Lynx. And they had a good run. But in the end, people wanted a little more. Wishful thinking isn't going to change that.
      • Re:Very simple (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Spy der Mann (805235) <spydermann.slash ... Hl.com minus cat> on Monday March 10, 2008 @02:09AM (#22697600) Homepage Journal

        And they are bringing IE8 into compliance because...?


        because they lost the bet. Microsoft expected the force of millions of dollars in propaganda to succeed against those annoying amateurs. But guess what, the amateurs are winning. The book of Mozilla explains it much more elegantly.

        Mammon slept. And the beast reborn spread over the earth and its numbers grew legion. And they proclaimed the times and sacrificed crops unto the fire, with the cunning of foxes. And they built a new world in their own image as promised by the sacred words, and spoke of the beast with their children. Mammon awoke, and lo! it was naught but a follower.
        from The Book of Mozilla, 11:9
        (10th Edition)
    • Re:Very simple (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Bogtha (906264) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @11:21PM (#22696864)

      Microsoft doesn't WANT IE to be compatible.

      This might fit in well with Slashdot groupthink, but it doesn't fit in well with reality.

      Back when Internet Explorer 6 was being developed, they were in direct competition with Netscape. Internet Explorer 6, when it was released was probably the best browser around when it came to supporting CSS. And you want us to believe that the explanation for 6 being worse than 5.5 in this test was deliberate sabotage by Microsoft?

      They abandoned Internet Explorer development when they won the browser war. Sure, at that point you can make a case for them not wanting to be compatible. But at that point, they weren't developing Internet Explorer at all, so you can't use it as an explanation for Internet Explorer getting worse. And when Internet Explorer development was restarted, they were responding to a call for improved standards support,which they have delivered on.

      I'm sorry, but deliberate sabotage is a ridiculous way of explaining this. Remember, the Acid tests are designed to trigger flaws in popular browsers. Of course it's going to target Internet Explorer 6 and 7 bugs over ancient versions. Internet Explorer 5.5 is no longer popular, so what's the point in ferreting out bugs for the Acid3 test? The real surprise is that people didn't expect this result.

      • got your browsers a bit mixed up there. IE 5.5 was in direct competition, 6 was released after the war.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by VGPowerlord (621254)
          When did the war actually end? I thought IE5 was the final nail in Netscape's coffin, which would make IE5.5 also after the war ended.
        • Re:Very simple (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Bogtha (906264) on Monday March 10, 2008 @12:00AM (#22697070)

          I guess it depends on when you consider the war to have ended, but the important point is that Internet Explorer 6 was indeed a marked improvement in standards support over Internet Explorer 5.5, so it's silly to say that it deliberately does worse in a test written the best part of a decade later. If Microsoft were trying to do worse with Internet Explorer 6, then they failed.

      • Internet Explorer 6, when it was released was probably the best browser around when it came to supporting CSS.

        Err, pretty sure I was using Mozilla back in 2001 when IE 6 was released (it was in the 0.9 versions at this time), and I'm sure it had better standards support than any version of IE did until recently.

        • by Bogtha (906264)

          I don't think it's fair to count pre-beta software. I remember the quality of Mozilla 0.9 and I distinctly remember choosing Netscape 4 over it. Sure, it supported more CSS, but it was hardly an option for the average person. If it's important, consider my previous statement to be "best released browser around".

          • by edwdig (47888)
            I don't think it's fair to count pre-beta software. I remember the quality of Mozilla 0.9 and I distinctly remember choosing Netscape 4 over it.

            Mozilla 0.9 was far better than pre-beta. That's when it became a pleasure to use. The UI had just about worked the kinks out by then, and that's around when tabs came in.

            Mozilla 0.6 was the release Netscape 6 was based off of. Even then, it was a tossup whether it was better or worse than Netscape 4. It crashed less than Netscape and usually rendered a lot better (
          • by unapersson (38207)
            Netscape 6 was based on Mozilla 0.9. So it was used in release software.
        • I'm not taking that statement on faith. Everyone thought the entire Mozilla project was doomed to failure at the time. I remember trying to convince my employer at the time that our new project had to support netscape ( mozilla was always just supposed to become the next version of Netscape). But I lost that argument because it sucked, didn't support much css or work correctly with most websites in existence. Take a look at Joel's assessment of mozilla in 2003 [joelonsoftware.com] when he first switched to firefox.
          • by edwdig (47888)
            But I lost that argument because it sucked, didn't support much css or work correctly with most websites in existence.

            It certainly worked with most websites. The few it didn't were either detecting it as Netscape 4 and sending it the wrong HTML, or were coded to use IE only features instead of the standards. People just do less of those things today.

            Take a look at Joel's assessment of mozilla in 2003 when he first switched to firefox.

            He's ranting about Firefox having a ton of features that had been in Mozil
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by bunratty (545641)
            I was also using Mozilla all during 2001, when it was common on Slashdot for people so say that Mozilla 1.0 would never be released. I never thought that it was "doomed to failure". I saw it as the alternative browser with the most potential, even though Opera was more popular then. It had, and still has, far better standards support than IE. IE isn't even anywhere near catching up to the other popular browsers in standards support.
    • Microsoft doesn't WANT IE to be compatible. Have the most popular browser and have it not be compatible, and you force everyone to be compatible with YOU - and the competitors who are "standards" compatible are thereby not compatible with what most people was used to, etc.

      If you can't own the internet, this is the next best thing.

      Only until the others get a significant if inferior market share. IE may have something around 70%, but companies selling stuff on the net don't want to dismiss a potential 30% of customers, and I would imagine that quite a few people decide to favor the non IE browsers out of dislike for Microsoft.
      It used to be the case that if you used Firefox, you also had to use IE for some sites. now, hardly at all. I came across one site, which was for a UK TV company that wouldn't work properly in Firefox, but it wo

  • Uhhh (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hassman (320786) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @10:41PM (#22696642) Journal
    No one else finds it odd that only a few browsers scored over 60%... What good is a standard that no one adheres to?

    Makes it seem more like a suggestion...
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      The Acid tests are, to put it kindly, perverse. They basically try to hit every corner case of the standards in the most convoluted way possible. I'm not saying 60% is adequate, but it's understandable for a browser that's under development.
      • Wow, I got scored as a troll? That's a first. Come on, guys, I meant it as humor, tongue-in-cheek kind of thing. Note the title of my comment; I was referring to IE 5.5 *specifically* as getting things right by dint of its crappiness. I'm sorry, but it's a well-documented fact that it has a horrible render engine chock-full of bugs. As a web developer, I've earned the right to say that the browser has its problems.

        I have to say that 7.0 is a lot easier to code for and seems to actually be respecting my
    • Re:Uhhh (Score:5, Informative)

      by The Ancients (626689) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @10:50PM (#22696698) Homepage

      You're confusing intent with result.

      The difference is that the teams working on Safari, Opera, Firefox, et al want to improve their product. Microsoft didn't care for a very long time. In fact, the Safari team even have a bug filed for the rendering issues Safari has with Acid3 [webkit.org]. Further, they're communicating frequently with their user base and anyone else interested with regard to their progress [webkit.org].

      • Re:Uhhh (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Blakey Rat (99501) on Monday March 10, 2008 @12:54AM (#22697318)
        Netscape/Mozilla also "didn't care" for a long period of time... that multiple-year-long slog between Netscape 4 and Mozilla 6 during which they didn't release a browser whatsoever. Of course, Microsoft does that between IE 6 and IE 7 and it's a horrible crime against humanity, but when Netscape/Mozilla did it, it's all OK.

        Microsoft stopped development on IE because:
        1) They weren't charging any money for it,
        2) There was no feasible competition on Windows,
        3) It was definitely "good enough" and in some ways superior to competing browsers. (XMLHttpRequest was invented by Microsoft, you might recall.)

        Considering that IE and Netscape were both pretty much just pulling "standards" out of their ass in the early days, the only reason Mozilla browser are more standards-compliant now is that they shredded the Netscape 4 code and started from scratch. IE is IE because, at the time this code was being written, the "standard" was "what Netscape did."

        All I can say is that I hope HTML5 starts hitting browsers soon... HTML5 is the first Internet standard designed by people who know what people actually use the web for.

        (CSS is supposed to be a language to describe page layout. And yet, it has no support for columns until CSS3. It took THREE VERSIONS to come up with a layout idea that's been used in newspapers for books for literally centuries?! This is a language designed by people amazingly removed from reality. And that's just one example of the idiocy of web standards.)
        • I agree with your assertion that Netscape/Mozilla floundered for a few years
          But I certainly would'nt say that they "did'nt care" . Netscape (the company) was essentially getting squeezed illegaly by Microsoft and had bigger problems to worry about, this went on till they gave up and gave whatever remained to the community. I'd say they did care based on their decision of opening the product up.
          And about Mozilla I'd say they care too, because all the while that Microsoft sat idle, Mozilla managed to fo
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Blakey Rat (99501)
            I agree with your assertion that Netscape/Mozilla floundered for a few years
            But I certainly would'nt say that they "did'nt care" . Netscape (the company) was essentially getting squeezed illegaly by Microsoft and had bigger problems to worry about


            Oh please. They couldn't stand the heat, so they got out of the kitchen. Netscape wasn't being "illegally squeezed" by Microsoft, their product just sucked and they couldn't compete. Let's assume Dell got the choice to ship both Netscape 4 and IE 4 with Windows; wh
        • Re:Uhhh (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Bogtha (906264) on Monday March 10, 2008 @02:06AM (#22697588)

          Netscape/Mozilla also "didn't care" for a long period of time... that multiple-year-long slog between Netscape 4 and Mozilla 6 during which they didn't release a browser whatsoever. Of course, Microsoft does that between IE 6 and IE 7 and it's a horrible crime against humanity, but when Netscape/Mozilla did it, it's all OK.

          They aren't even remotely the same actions. Microsoft disbanded the Internet Explorer development team and assigned the developers to different projects. Netscape/Mozilla.org decided to invest extra time rewriting things to get a better end result. I personally think that was a bad investment, but that doesn't mean they killed the browser market and stopped development.

          IE is IE because, at the time this code was being written, the "standard" was "what Netscape did."

          Actually, Microsoft had a head-start with CSS because Netscape bet on JSSS. The W3C subsequently chose to reject JSSS in favour of CSS, meaning that while Microsoft released Internet Explorer 3 with preliminary CSS support, Netscape scrambled to transcode CSS to JSSS so that Netscape 4 had some kind of CSS support.

          So far from the standard being "what Netscape did", it was actually the other way around. The reason why Microsoft is so far behind is entirely their own doing.

          All I can say is that I hope HTML5 starts hitting browsers soon... HTML5 is the first Internet standard designed by people who know what people actually use the web for.

          Ahh yes, HTML 5, complete with the <font> element type. Because they know what people actually use the web for.

          It took THREE VERSIONS to come up with a layout idea that's been used in newspapers for books for literally centuries?!

          Web pages have infinite vertical space. Newspapers and books don't. Horizontal space is at a premium for web pages. It's not as important for newspapers and books. Unsurprisingly, a layout strategy that trades horizontal space for vertical space isn't a high priority for a technology primarily aimed at web pages. I wouldn't say that web standards that actually prioritise the web are nothing but "idiocy", I'd say that's entirely sensible.

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Blakey Rat (99501)
            I personally think that was a bad investment, but that doesn't mean they killed the browser market and stopped development.

            Well, when there's no competition, there's no development. That's true in almost every industry during all of history. That's why monopolies are so bad in the first place. And by taking their ball and going home, Netscape was handing Microsoft the monopoly in this area.

            (Of course, Netscape was run by absolute morons, and by the time IE was technically superior, Netscape was a lost cause
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Shados (741919)
      On Slashdot, you keep hearing about "This is the standard!!!", but the W3C and other such entities do not make standards. They propose standards. Then the market decides if it wants it or not. Since a lot of bodies don't have the time or manpower to make anything better (and even if they could, it would be quite a waste of time and money), they take what the W3C spits out and implement it. As good a spec as any. And -then- it becomes the standard. Stuff like Acid Test helps meet that goal.

      That being said, a
      • Re:Uhhh (Score:5, Informative)

        by Bogtha (906264) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @11:42PM (#22696984)

        Since a lot of bodies don't have the time or manpower to make anything better (and even if they could, it would be quite a waste of time and money), they take what the W3C spits out and implement it.

        That's not really true. Browser vendors participate in the W3C working groups that publish these specifications. They have an active role in creating them. Take a look at the acknowledgment section of the CSS 2 specification [w3.org], for example.

        This specification is the product of the W3C Working Group on Cascading Style Sheets and Formatting Properties. In addition to the editors of this specification, the members of the Working Group are: Brad Chase (Bitstream), Chris Wilson (Microsoft), Daniel Glazman (Electricité de France), Dave Raggett (W3C/HP), Ed Tecot (Microsoft), Jared Sorensen (Novell), Lauren Wood (SoftQuad), Laurie Anna Kaplan (Microsoft), Mike Wexler (Adobe), Murray Maloney (Grif), Powell Smith (IBM), Robert Stevahn (HP), Steve Byrne (JavaSoft), Steven Pemberton (CWI), Thom Phillabaum (Netscape), Douglas Rand (Silicon Graphics), Robert Pernett (Lotus), Dwayne Dicks (SoftQuad), and Sho Kuwamoto (Macromedia). We thank them for their continued efforts.

        A number of invited experts to the Working Group have contributed: George Kersher, Glenn Rippel (Bitstream), Jeff Veen (HotWired), Markku T. Hakkinen (The Productivity Works), Martin Dürst (W3C, formerly Universität Zürich), Roy Platon (RAL), Todd Fahrner (Verso), Tim Boland (NIST), Eric Meyer (Case Western Reserve University), and Vincent Quint (W3C).

        The section on Web Fonts was strongly shaped by Brad Chase (Bitstream) David Meltzer (Microsoft Typography) and Steve Zilles (Adobe). The following people have also contributed in various ways to the section pertaining to fonts: Alex Beamon (Apple), Ashok Saxena (Adobe), Ben Bauermeister (HP), Dave Raggett (W3C/HP), David Opstad (Apple), David Goldsmith (Apple), Ed Tecot (Microsoft), Erik van Blokland (LettError), François Yergeau (Alis), Gavin Nicol (Inso), Herbert van Zijl (Elsevier), Liam Quin, Misha Wolf (Reuters), Paul Haeberli (SGI), and the late Phil Karlton (Netscape).

        The section on Paged Media was in large parts authored by Robert Stevahn (HP) and Stephen Waters (Microsoft).

        Robert Stevahn (HP), Scott Furman (Netscape), and Scott Isaacs (Microsoft) were key contributors to CSS Positioning.

        And of course, one of the four editors of the specification is Håkon Wium Lie, CTO of Opera.

        So you see, far from the poor old browser vendors not having the resources to make anything better and passively reacting to anything the W3C says, you can see that the browser vendors are substantially the people who made the specifications.

        • by Shados (741919)
          A big group of people who disagree with each other. Its like if they werent participating, because the result will be a big soup of everyone's idea... so the entity may as well be separate. (Its a big complain about the W3C from its own members, thus why you see things like HTML5 pop up)
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Bogtha (906264)

            Wait, so your argument is that it's only a standard if other people aren't allowed to participate, because they don't always agree with you?

            I don't think coming to a consensus is "like if they weren't participating because the result will be a big soup", I think it's the whole point of authoring standards.

      • by hedwards (940851)
        But, the markets haven't been creating standards. If the markets were creating them, then there'd be consistency. The fact that IE alone can't be reliably render pages that use current technology is a pretty good indication that the markets haven't been creating standards.

        Hence why people are willing to push for the w3c recommendations, at least those are easily read and understood. And why better browsers aim towards complying with the recommendations rather than each other.

        Market based solutions for techn
      • On Slashdot, you keep hearing about "This is the standard!!!"

        Hmmm that would make an excellent epic scene...

        IE: Compatibility? This is madness!
        Webstandards.org: Madness?
        This...
        is...
        STANDARDS!!!
        *Throws ie into the pit of Acid death*

    • Re:Uhhh (Score:4, Informative)

      by pembo13 (770295) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @11:01PM (#22696754) Homepage
      Not really. I often hear/read of browsers degrading compliance for the sake of rendering what would otherwise work only in IE.
    • by Kjella (173770)
      Yes, because they should implement it first and write the design documents later like in the lesser known waterclimb method. Eventually you get to the requirements phase, where you tell the customer what's required of him to use the product. This also saves the overhead of the verification phase, because clearly whatever the code does is what it was meant to do and only the documentation can be imperfect. By the time you've reached the maintenance phase, you have hopefully been promoted and can blame it all
    • Re:Uhhh (Score:5, Insightful)

      by mike_sucks (55259) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @11:35PM (#22696958) Homepage
      You're right, they aren't standards. Go to any one of the W3's "standards" documents and you'll see they are all called "Recommendations", HTML 4.01 [w3.org], for example. The cool kids call them "RECs".

      Now, what good is a recommendation, you ask? Plenty - mostly interoperability. The W3C provides a specification and recommends people implement it. Those that do can interoprate. The consumer wins.

      How do you get the vendors to implement the RECs? Make it an important bullet point on their feature lists. The Acid tests are a particularly well done kick in the backside for browser vendors. They have effectively become more important than the bullet point that says "standards compliant" because they are a (limited) test suite. For vendors to be able to say they do well in the tests, certain key parts of the RECs must be implemented and done so correctly, there is no room for buggy or partial implementation.

      The result in the end is better interoperability. The RECs provide that common basis that vendors can't quibble over. The Acid tests are both the carrot to get them implementing the RECs and proof that they did so (partially) correctly.

      /Mike

    • by Vexorian (959249)

      Who is this "no one" guy?

      It is a new test for a reason, you know?

      I am a little annoyed by the fact it looks like in order for your browser to be standard compliant you now need to enable javascript...

  • by Brett Buck (811747) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @10:56PM (#22696734)
    They ALL score less than 20. That's essentially random response to the test - so it's just a matter of luck if one scores better than another.

            Brett
  • by EEPROMS (889169) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @10:58PM (#22696740)
    To put it all into perspective how bad IE 8.0 is when it comes to web standards I tested a two year old install of Konqueror (KDE 3.4) and it gets a score of 51%. The best IE 8.0 can do is 17%.
  • safari (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sentientbrendan (316150) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @11:13PM (#22696820)
    really seems to be kicking ass at 90%; granted it is from a nightly build and not an official release.

    Still, Safari seems to have been ahead of the game on standards and features for a while. Weren't they the first ones to pass acid2? Also, they were the first to implement various extensions to HTML which have become prevalent, such as the CANVAS tag, which was later added to firefox and others.

    Now, there's a version of safari for windows that I've been meaning to try, but it seems to still be in public beta, and has been there for quite a while. My question for anyone in the know, is whether the safari windows build is still progressing.
    • Re:safari (Score:5, Insightful)

      by bunratty (545641) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @11:27PM (#22696912)

      Safari development builds are doing well on Acid3, and Safari passed Acid2 quickly, because Safari developers fixed the problems that the Acid tests demonstrate. If you look at the stable release builds of Safari, they do far worse than the stable release builds of Opera and Firefox. But if you look at the latest development builds, Safari does far better than Opera and Firefox. Safari is doing well on Acid tests because the developers put a lot of effort into making Safari do well on Acid tests, not because Safari is "ahead of the game" on standards.

      There's far too much bickering about which browser is best and which browser is behind the curve. It seems that Safari, Opera, and Firefox are all very good browsers each with their own strengths in standards compliance and user interface, with IE constantly playing catch-up.

      • Re:safari (Score:5, Informative)

        by 99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) on Monday March 10, 2008 @12:32AM (#22697202)

        Safari development builds are doing well on Acid3, and Safari passed Acid2 quickly, because Safari developers fixed the problems that the Acid tests demonstrate. If you look at the stable release builds of Safari, they do far worse than the stable release builds of Opera and Firefox.

        I think your idea here is a bit off. The stable version of Safari does perform more poorly than the stable versions of Firefox and Opera, but I think this is more likely attributable to Apple's more leisurely release schedule. The article referenced here was obviously put together by someone more focused on Windows and OS X. They only tried to test one browser on one version of Linux, compared to the dozen or so for the other OS's. It is, then, understandable that you would get that impression from the data presented. What a lot of people forget is that Safari uses the Webkit rendering engine which is also used in a variety of other browsers whose developers also contribute to it. The stable version of Konquerer 3.5.8 uses the same rendering engine and scores a 52 on the Acid 3 test, better than either Firefox or Opera. So Webkit is being updated and did, in fact, do better than Gecko or Presto for stable release versions when Acid 3 was published. (Note Konquerer 4.0.2 scores a 62, but I don't know if that is considered a "stable" branch.)

        Mind you, this is not to imply that the Acid 3 test can really judge the respective compliance of the engines in general. This is not the case. The test was designed with bias in mind, bias against Webkit and Gecko. The criteria for inclusion in the test was that one or the other had to fail it and we don't know how many of the Acid 3 authors were focusing on one engine or another. If anything Opera and IE should be doing better than Firefox or Konquerer or Safari, since there are probably a number of tests those browsers fail, but which were excluded from Acid 3 simply because both the Gecko and Webkit engines passed it.

        Safari is doing well on Acid tests because the developers put a lot of effort into making Safari do well on Acid tests, not because Safari is "ahead of the game" on standards.

        I know for a fact that developers of both Gecko and Webkit are specifically using these tests as a way to find problems to fix, which is great since that is why the tests were written; not to try to measure "compliance."

        There's far too much bickering about which browser is best and which browser is behind the curve. It seems that Safari, Opera, and Firefox are all very good browsers each with their own strengths in standards compliance and user interface, with IE constantly playing catch-up.

        This is true enough, well except about IE maybe. In my own personal experience every browser other than IE works just fine for rendering everything I create to the standards. There might be the occasional bug or edge case, but I never run across them. IE, on the other hand, I have to create work arounds every single time. I'm not sure it is "playing catch up" so much as deliberately failing to implement huge portions of many standards as a way to prevent cross platform compatibility and keep Web applications that undermine their platform lock-in from being a real threat.

        • by Bogtha (906264)

          What a lot of people forget is that Safari uses the Webkit rendering engine which is also used in a variety of other browsers whose developers also contribute to it. The stable version of Konquerer 3.5.8 uses the same rendering engine and scores a 52 on the Acid 3 test, better than either Firefox or Opera. So Webkit is being updated and did, in fact, do better than Gecko or Presto for stable release versions when Acid 3 was published.

          Actually, Webkit is a fork of KHTML (Konqueror's rendering engine) a

      • Re:safari (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Koiu Lpoi (632570) <koiulpoi AT gmail DOT com> on Monday March 10, 2008 @12:53AM (#22697310)
        Safari is doing well on Acid tests because the developers put a lot of effort into making Safari do well on Acid tests, not because Safari is "ahead of the game" on standards.
         
        Are these really different? The Acid Tests test standards compliance, so if you do well on them, even if it is your aim to do so, aren't you embracing standards?
      • >Safari is doing well on Acid tests because the developers put a
        >lot of effort into making Safari do well on Acid tests, not because
        >Safari is "ahead of the game" on standards.

        Exactly! That's a basic fallacy of the test (or, more accurately, the interpretation that people are making of passing or failing the test). It's not intended to be comprehensive, so you can go in, run the test, see what fails, and just fix what it necessary to pass - not necessarily prove that your bro
    • Re:safari (Score:4, Informative)

      by Idiot with a gun (1081749) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @11:32PM (#22696944)
      I would like to point out that Safari's HTML renderer, Webkit, is indeed open source.
  • the answer is simple, the value given does not directly equate to a percentage of conformance, it just means it screwed up earlier or later...but does not indicate how much it screwed up by (or more importantly what ELSE would screw up). So i would imagine that IE 5.5 probably has does some things simply "differently" from the later versions that make it fail at a different time, but that doesn't mean it failed less badly.

    proxy
  • by JimboFBX (1097277) on Sunday March 09, 2008 @11:25PM (#22696888)
    If there doesn't exist a program that can render your test correctly, then how do you know for sure you wrote it correctly to begin with?
  • not like it matters (Score:2, Informative)

    by MSDos-486 (779223)

    One of the primary components of the Acid test are to see if a browser will properly handle out of spec code.In this case "proper handling" means ignore it. IE is counter intuitive in this sense because it has facilities to "guess" what should happen.

    <rant>

    Today I was borrowing someones computer and i went on a few websites with IE. When they came back they were disappointed because all of the sites i went to messed up there "recently visited" listing in IE. They were frustrated that that there

  • by trixy_1086 (687653) on Monday March 10, 2008 @01:14AM (#22697414) Homepage Journal
    I found this information regarding the Acid 3 test on a Webkit developer's site (http://webkit.org/blog/158/the-acid-3-test/) As much as I hate to debunk any article bashing IE, here is the information from the article:

    If you run Acid 3 on the shipping versions of current browsers (Firefox 2, Safari 3, Opera 9, IE7), you'll see that they all score quite low. For example Safari 3 scores a 39/100. This percentage score is a bit misleading however. The situation with all four browser engines really isn't that bad. You can think of the Acid 3 test as consisting of 100 individual test suites. In order for a browser engine to claim one of these precious 100 points, it has to pass a whole battery of tests around a specific standard. In other words it's like the browser is being asked to take 100 separate exams and score an A+ on each test in order to get any credit at all. The reality is that all of the browsers are doing much better than their scores would have you believe, since the engines are often passing a majority of the subtests and experiencing minor failures that cost them the point for that section.
  • IE 5 and IE 5.5 where developed during the period during which it appeared the government was going to atually do something about their monopoly -- during the period when DOJ was building their case and everyone was getting ready for what should have been a huge trial.

    Everyone in their right mind (presumably including MS) was expecting something big like a breakup of the company was going to happen. So MS was having to play by the rules there briefly rather than the usually sabotaging anything they didn't
  • Windows 3.11 For Workgroups beats Vista at many tasks, and will run reasonably well on a 486. Is this a trend for Microsoft, older software outperforming newer software?
  • Sigh. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Xest (935314) on Monday March 10, 2008 @06:42AM (#22698638)
    This is similar to saying that MS-DOS 5 has less bugs than Windows Vista hence MS-DOS 5 is far better than Windows Vista

    Well yes, of course it has less bugs, because it's much smaller and supports far fewer features, but that doesn't make it better, it's nigh on useless for everything people want to do nowadays.

    At the end of the day, IE5.5 supports less features and gracefully falls back where it fails on a feature as it should. IE6 and IE7 are much more ambitious and implement far more features, but when pushed to the limits on these features they fail more horribly than IE5 which doesn't even try. There is an argument that features shouldn't be implemented at all if they don't work perfectly but I disagree, the fact is the features in question almost certainly work in say 90% of cases it's just that Acid3 is specifically exploiting the cases where it doesn't work rather than where it does.

    People are free to stick with IE5.5 if they like the fact it does better on the Acid3 test if they want, but don't come crying when you can't use half the features on sites that are designed for the new series of browsers.

    Acid3 is doing it's job well, it's highlighting problems in implementations so that they can be fixed in future versions. I'm not sure why some people see Acid tests as a tool to attack browsers with, that's not the purpose. Whilst crappy journalism might like to use it for this purpose one would hope that Slashdot was above Daily Mail type shoddy stories.

If Machiavelli were a hacker, he'd have worked for the CSSG. -- Phil Lapsley

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