Monday, June 1, 2009

The Curse of IE

There is no question in my mind that Firefox is a vastly superior web browser to Internet Explorer. That may sound like a conceited fan-boy statement, but it really isn't. I'm not saying Firefox is the best (I'm waiting for a Linux version of Google Chrome). Its just that, as a web developer, I can't stand the way IE continually ignores internet standards when displaying web pages. My pages will look amazing in every other browser - but alas! I will go to check them in IE and inevitably something is not displaying properly. I realize, however, that the majority of internet surfers use IE and so, much to my chagrin, I must make it look pretty in IE as well. What's more annoying is the fact that, since IE is so closely connected to the Windows OS, I can only have one version of IE installed at a time. Yet, my statistics tell me that there are still as many people using IE 6 as there are using IE 7 or 8. And pages display vastly different in each version. This is why I wrote this post. Today I discovered the Internet Explorer Collection. Someone has put together stand-alone builds of every version of IE from 1.0 to 8.0. Now I can test my pages in every version of IE that I need to! Oh, this is a bitter-sweet day. As a result, today I used IE 8 for the first time. And guess what? My page displayed properly! I was shocked. And amazed. And thrilled. Unfortunately I also got an illegal opperation as soon as I tried to open a new tab. Oh well, nothing is perfect :p. Its hard to tell if this is a problem with the browser itself or if it is just an unfortunate side-effect of making a stand-alone version.

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