updated: September 27th, 2006 / Ross Johnson / 2 Comments

IE7 is too little too late…

While many web designers and developers are eagerly waiting a “much improved” Internet explorer… I sit in disdain.

While IE7 does fix many of the bug’s that plagued IE6, and it does support a few previously unsupported CSS elements (fixed position, better fixed backgrounds, etc) – Microsoft has already indicated, and the beta release have proven that IE7 will NOT properly render pages that previously rendered in IE6.

Further – IE7 is not going to be an automatic and critical update. This means that the adoption of IE7 over IE6 will be slow. This will cause a necessity to continue to support the buggy and non-compliant IE6, as well as IE7.

At the end of the day, there is very little benefit for web designers and developers for IE7. We still have to fully support IE6, which has all the bugs, and unsupported css elements plus another version of IE7 which also will render differently than safari, FireFox, opera, etc…

To make things more complicated, we STILL can’t have several versions of IE. Our only option is several computers, emulators, or hacked versions of IE with questionable rendering accuracy.

While people are praising IE7 and excited about it’s release, I am further frustrated. Had Microsoft kept IE7 similar enough to IE6 where it could be a critical update, ensured that it was backwards compatible with IE6 rendering, it would be a much different story.

However, as it stands, IE7 is simply too little too late.

2 thoughts IE7 is too little too late…

  1. http://www.quirksmode.org/browsers/multipleie.html

    There area few new scripts out for running standalone versions of 7, including beta 3, without overwriting your previous versions. I can run 5,5.5,6 and 7 b1,b2 and b3 all at once. It takes some work, but I know you’ve got the cajones.

    As usual, I’m in complete agreement with the sentiment here. Backwards compatibility with 6 was a simple matter of fixing the rendering engine and having it ignore all the hacks out there like all of the other browsers do. How do you screw that up?


  2. The quirksmode approach definitley is better than nothing, and I use it as best I can. My concern is that many people report rendering inconsistencies with the hacked multi-install versions of IE to the stand alones.

    My planning as of late is to use some old towers and a switchbox to simply have a testing station in my office where I can switch through Mac/IE5.5/6/7/etc through three computers/monitors.

    I can only wait for the looks the other office tenants give me when I start setting up 😉


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