What To Do With IE

Yesterday Scoble asked what should be done with IE, and as usual, many people chimed in. That was for the followup of this post telling about his visit with the IE team (which also got lots of comments).


The overwhelming majority say “fix CSS and support PNG”. The overwhelming “feel” I get back from those who appear to be from MS or within the heart of MS is “why bother if it isn’t making money for us our shareholders?” That’s a sad attitude to have. Microsoft’s goal was to have “a computer on every desktop running our software”, and now they have it why bother making it better. Oh sure, Longhorn will be here in a few years and it’ll be great, even tie your shoes for you, but in the meantime, well, sucks to be you. If Microsoft was a little start up I wouldn’t have a problem. More than once at Merilus we didn’t put in cool features because the developer and q&a time associated with something that perhaps one customer wanted was just too high and would affect the bottom line, which was getting a complete and working product out the door. However, microsoft isn’t a little company.


Microsoft tells us (thought it’s evangelists and bloggers) that it’s listening to the people out there, and how it respects the developers and wants communication with them, blah blah blah, but then a (grantedly informal) poll of users and 99% of them say “fix the fucking rendering engine and support file formats that have been around and used for years” and they say “uhmm… shareholder value! shareholder value!”. No good.


I voiced this idea in the second set of comments and skoon echoed it… stop making IE. Supply a link to mozilla or opera or something, or include links to both IE and another browser and see which one people use. It’s not like including mozilla on the desktop will take away your market share would it? You give away IE anyway. Oh right, by tying IE into the OS, the IDE, the help browser, and everything else they can they force people to rely on MS for things other than browsing, and giving them a choice would mean they’d probably move away (as IE is sorely lacking in features) and use something else, and you’d still have to develop the IE renderer for development, so why give someone else the leg up?


An interesting quandry no doubt.


I’m interested in my small group of web developer type friends would you agree or disagree that IE is lagging behind (a la netscape 4.x did back in the day)?

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