"Computers are my best friends. When I help people find each other without knowing they used a computer, my best friends and I revel in our little secret!"    -Langel




Can we say goodbye to Internet Explorer 6 yet?

Saturday, March 7th 2009 1:39pm

At my computer technician job, coming back to a project where I had finished installing a fresh Windows XP, visiting the microsoft update website (only accessible with ActiveX enabled Internet Explorer), installing many updates and rebooting several times. When I left it the week before we were rocking some serious Service Pack 3. But when I booted up this soon-to-be-stressed Pentium II machine the updates fired up again.

What's this? An automatic upgrade to Internet Explorer 7 from the WinXP defacto standard IE6? There were five years between these two versions of this browser and IE7 is already 3 years old. There has been a buzz over the past six months of web designers dropping IE6.

This auto-upgrade is some kind of grand hurrah! Anyone smart enough to know how to turn off Windows Automatic Updates is sure to also be aware of their internet browsing options. I have even been considering redirecting all IE users to a 'browser alternative' page when accessing Battle of the Bits.

I'm a nerd; I have five different browsers installed. I like getting the updates and trying to find the feature changes. I don't like seeing how my layouts need tweaking so they appear the same in these five different browsers. They all seem to have their quirks but that's probably more because none of them are 100% the same. Still, though, Internet Explorer (across 3 active versions) maintains leadership in browser market share.

So what's wrong with browsing the interwebs with IE6 specifically? To quote Greg Bell of, "Its a useless piece of turd". But really it's more like an outdated piece of garbage.

Without a properly declared DOCTYPE Explorer will default to quirk mode. IE6 defaults to this quirkiness if you declare an XHTML DOCTYPE with an opening <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> which is considered proper syntax. In fact, even IE7 can fall prey to this quirkiness if any page errors confuses it. And once IE goes quirk you end up with a silly, misbehaving box-model.

But we are all professional designers here. We don't make mistakes within the markup and our DIVs have always got their borders and padding outside of the width. Coz we're smart, cous, that's why.

If you would like to further your web browser confusion get started using Internet Explorer 8 beta. It's your chance to help Microsoft. Get on them like an old married couple, "You are doing it all wrong!"

posted by Langel

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