Weekend Discussion: Microsoft and 86%

Friday July 14th, 2000

There has been a lot of discussion about Microsoft's release of IE 5.5 recently, especially in regards to their support for standards such as CSS, DOM, and XML. Apparently Microsoft is developing new proprietary technologies at the expense of standards compliance in core web technologies.

The conversation in the WSP's mailing list has gotten overheated, and the WSP has released a piece on IE 5.5.

CNet is running an article on IE 5.5's proprietary new features, and there's a discussion on Slashdot regarding this very issue.

I now have a weblog at the O'Reilly Network, and you can check out my first piece, devoted to Microsoft's .NET initiative, which hits on Microsoft's standards support.

With all this hoopla aimed at Microsoft, we shouldn't be letting Netscape off easy. I think it's time for Netscape to come out and state clearly where they expect to be in terms of standards compliance at version 6.0. If it is not the 100% that we had been told to expect, it's in their best interest to say why. Remember, Netscape 6.0 will have its own "behavior" implementation (XBL) that is, at this point, just as proprietary as Microsoft's DHTML behaviors (the dev team plans on submitting XBL to the W3C in the future).

And although has not taken a position one way or another on Mozilla's standards compliance, it would be nice if they could weigh in and let the community know what they're thinking in terms of standards support in Mozilla's first release.

What do you think about standards support and compliance? Is it important? Or should the placation of existing customers be the priority? Let us know!

#57 Which Market

by Luddite

Sunday July 16th, 2000 8:04 PM

You are replying to this message

I think Netscape and Mozilla will have a hard time regaining corporate or casual user market share. They'll have a nice lead in the appliance/pda/embedded market though.

My dilemna as a corporate web developer is I want to use Mozilla because of its superior standards support. But if I do it's likely it won't run as well as IE in our NT and MS based system.

I'd love to be able to send out a totally customized and branded browser to our clients so that they can access everything on our web site. But if I do that I need to duplicate or rewrite and maintain several apps that won't run on Mozilla so I'm duplicating effort and increasing costs. And what of users of the web site not using Mozilla? With a small marketshare initially when will the company finally adopt Mozilla as the standard? We just settled on IE because of Netscape 4's crappy standards support. We simply cannot wait longer.

I write to standards as much as possible but I fear 100% standards compliance in Mozilla is not going to get people to switch to it, especially in the corporate market.