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!

#65 Yeah, but

by Kovu <>

Monday July 17th, 2000 7:30 PM

You are replying to this message

Firstly, the agreement runs out in January. We'll see if they renew it. Secondly, AOL has no interest in using 4.x -- it's crap. Of course they would wait for the new product.

Third, the whole 86 percent mark makes Microsoft's position in the Antitrust case look really bad. If AOL switched back now, they might upset the balance of the Antitrust case, and that's something AOL doesn't want to do. They HATE Microsoft and are going to wait until the trial is resolved before switching back. If the government gets its way -- likely so within the next 6 months to a year -- the deal with AOL will become illegal under the new restrictions.

Finally, AOL does have providers that use Netscape versions. They have a specific version of Netscape you can download. It doesn't replace IE, but you use it alongside. 4.x is not modular enough to bother trying to integrate and make a "Netscape" version.