View Full Version : Microsoft and web standards
Jun 10, 2004, 10:26 PM
Okay, don't flame me here, but I read something about how Longhorn will add more proprietary web standards to optimize use with IE (I think it was just a comment somewhere, so I don't have a link). I don't have much knowledge about this type of thing, so I don't know if this is BS or not. The argument is that since IE dominates browser share, that's bad news for everyone else. Is this something to be concerned about, or will most web developers stick to the more compatible standards?
Jun 10, 2004, 10:32 PM
Duff-Man says....M$ is *always* trying to make *their* standard everybody's standard...unfortunately there are too many web designers out there that fall for that crap too and figure if their page works in IE then that's okay and screw anybody else...if only they would stop and think for a moment if they really want M$ to be the ones deciding what "standards" are.....oh yeah!
Jun 10, 2004, 11:42 PM
I agree. It's just like Windows Media Audio: M$ doesn't offer WMA because it is better than mp3 or mp4, but because they want to control as much as possible. IE broke standards across the board, making life for developers more difficult and browsing with W3C compliant browsers a struggle. M$ has stated that they are taking a break from updating IE until Longhorn (with the exception of a service pack to add popup blocking but not tabs), and Opera and Mozilla are working together (http://www.internetnews.com/dev-news/article.php/3361141) to define standards in IE's wake.
M$ is even working to lock Google out (http://news.com.com/2009-1032_3-1020641.html) by integrating web search with local disk search. This is a great thing if it's because they can do a better job. The reality is that M$ repeatedly shows their true colors by delivering half-hearted results intended more to restrict competition while expanding their monopoly than to enhance the user experience.
Jun 10, 2004, 11:54 PM
The argument is that since IE dominates browser share, that's bad news for everyone else. Is this something to be concerned about, or will most web developers stick to the more compatible standards?
microsoft is the single largest threat to the internet. this is definitely reason for concern. unfortunately, there aren't a whole lot of web designers sticking to standards, most of them buy "GoLive for dummies" and think they can build a website. others only design for IE, because it's the most popular (also the least compliant). just look at all of the sites out there that turn you away if you aren't using IE. it's only going to get worse, as longhorn/avalon/.net and microsoft's non-compliant svg variant will essentially try to replace the w3c standards with proprietary ones. and guess what, businesses will design only for the "microsoft internet", because that's what 90% of people use, and the business has to make money. this is why mozilla and gnome are trying to combine forces before longhorn hits shelves - hopefully providing an alternative before the flack bomb explodes. when longhorn ships (which is what, 2014 now?), you're going to see a lot of enterprises pay unholy amounts to "upgrade" to the "latest and greatest", and there are going to be databases, bank websites, interactive content, etc. that will only run in longhorn because they're based on avalon/IE/microsoftsvg/etc and if you use something else, well, "sorry, but we only support IE".
think about how much of an ordeal to read a complex word file without word (if you can). now imagine if that was every website you visited. that's why this is a problem.
i think apple needs to expand on the sherlock/xquery apis to provide a similar solution on osx. in fact, a cross-platform solution could be created, just think of the potential that exists with things like renaissance (http://www.gnustep.it/Renaissance/) (gnustep/cocoa interfaces described in xml) and StepTalk (http://gnustep.org/experience/StepTalk.html) (scripting for GNUstep). these could be embedded within webkit to make a system that runs on mac, linux, and windows controling native objects, classes and interfaces, not just app-specific solutions. or, apple could just adopt xul. all open source, all cross-platform.
Jun 11, 2004, 12:39 AM
Unfortunately it's not BS. Here's the typical design steps for a webstite: Write beautiful standards compliant code and be very proud of yourself. Then add numerous hacks to your code to get the page to work right in IE so that 90% of the world can see it. IE is the problem, but they won't fix their problems. Microsoft is so big that they get the world to change around their mistakes. Day becomes night, black becomes white--just because Microsoft says so.
If you get a little nervous reading FattyMembrane's post, then you missed the point. Get completely ****** scared because that's the sugar coated version. The reality is much worse.
Jun 11, 2004, 06:01 PM
Unfortunately it's not BS. Here's the typical design steps for a webstite: Write beautiful standards compliant code and be very proud of yourself. Then add numerous hacks to your code to get the page to work right in IE so that 90% of the world can see it. IE is the problem, but they won't fix their problems.
i bang my head against the wall every day at work because i have to spend hours butchering my sites so that they work in IE. you can't tell a client, "well, actually, the site works fine, it's the browser that's making the mistakes". as far as they know, there are little men inside the computer dancing around to make pretty pictures on the screen and the only thing that matters is that it looks good on their end.
if you want to see something scary, look at these (http://channel9.msdn.com/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=9127) posts. these are people actually defending microsoft's position and hoping that they gain more market share. not only that, their suggestions for getting more users are not improving standards, they suggest adding more bells and whistles and deviate further because standards are "not always relevant". that scares the crap out of me, it's not just microsoft trying to control the internet, now web designers want to help. very few people understand how huge this problem is and that once longhorn arrives, an "open" internet is going to be little more than a hobby for a few techies.
just look at what microsoft is doing with it's "sparkle" technology. it's about 95% of the SVG spec, but is just different enough to be incompatible. why would anyone do what seems to be so stupid? because if you have a 93% market share, the original spec is now the "incompatible" version, you can't access web content without microsoft's browser, and the only way to get microsoft's browser is to buy windows. mom and pop checking the weather on their emachine have no idea that they're helping ms monopolize the internet.