Microsoft's next-generation web browser, Internet Explorer 8, has arrived. In a surprising move, after the demo of IE8 and its new features at today's session of the MIX08 conference, the startling announcement was made: "It's available for download now". The new browser showcases many new features and improvements, like Facebook and eBay integration, standards compliance, and the ability to work with AJAX web pages. What's most notable about IE8, though, is more than a sum of its parts. If anything, this launch shows that Microsoft is not taking Firefox's creep into browser market share lightly.
Let it be known that it is a Beta release and is not even advertised on the main pages of Microsoft.com so I wouldn't be reading too much into this. The way Microsoft has been going it will be through a half dozen betas or so, get released, still flawed and they will promise to fix it in the next version.
Maybe Microsoft has finally realized that they actually have the capital to compete with quality products instead of monopolistic trickery?
Maybe hell has frozen over as well?
This is a good thing for us (the users) because hopefully it means that Mozilla and Opera are going to step up the pace, cut down on bloat, and add more stability. Right now there are very few "features" I want in a browser besides those two.
The sad thing is, when Microsoft eventually wins the "browser wars" again, they're just going to go back to sleep, and IE 27 is going to be the rotting garbage that IE5-6 were.
from using it for only about 5 minutes, its almost instant open as opposed to ie 7 which would take a second.
they are pushing 'activities' and 'webslices'
after watching the webslices video about what it is. i'm not entirely sure.... its like an advanced rss feed... anyone know for sure? sounds really annoying from my standpoint because its not going to work on any browser besides ie, and no matter how cool it is, thats just stupid
it may actually be just an rss feed re-named, which would be cool. cause they are making them more user friendly.
i was just messing around and went to my employers website, highlighted the address, and a small icon pops up that lets you rollover and see a map or look up the definition bunch of other stuff.. pretty cool and very slickly implemented.
IE8's big feature is, of course, its better standards compliance, meaning that the Acid2 test, for evaluating CSS 2 compliance, renders correctly. But the crafty boffins down at the Web Standards Project have a newer, tougher test called Acid3, which the Vole's Internet Explorer 8 Beta 1 can't quite seem to get the hang of just yet.
Microsoft has additionally developed a group of CSS 2.1 test cases, which it reckons should make it a bit easier to test specific features and see which bits are supported and which bits aren't; This shows the company is taking these standards (or just the various fines and lawsuits it keeps getting slammed with) a lot more seriously.