There’s been a fair amount of publicity lately about Microsoft bringing Internet Explorer much more in-line with modern rendering engines with the upcoming release of Internet Explorer 9.0 which they plan to unveil at Mix10. There’s talk of strong HTML5 support, improved CSS compliance and even some support for CSS3. Everything we’re hearing is that 9.0 will do what some (naively) hoped IE 7.0 would do: bring IE in line with the “better” browsers of the world so we could earnestly look forward to the day we could stop saying, “I’ll do that when it’s supported in IE.” All of it got me thinking: as someone who hasn’t used any version of IE as my daily browser since Firefox was called Phoenix, is there anything Microsoft can do today that would make me want to use Internet Explorer?
Disregarding for the moment that my primary work and home computers are both Macs, would any version of IE be able to erase years of near torment the earlier versions have caused myself and other developers? I tweeted this question earlier today but I wanted to open it up to even broader discussion.
Would you use it?
Asking myself this question honestly, I don’t know that MS can do anything with IE to make me forget the connotation that the previously harmless two letters have in my eyes. Even when used under different context, I can’t help but cringe when I hear the letters “I and E” put together. There are some out there that would view IE’s closed-source nature as a serious hindrance and refuse to use it on ethical grounds alone. I’m far more interested in the web development community as a whole: would you really use IE if it were *gulp* better?
I hope it doesn’t matter.
I truly hope that the answer to this question is moot; it will mean we’ve finally reached a day where users have real choice in browsers As developers, we’d no longer have to fear the extra work that will be caused by users who choose to use the default.