Help Petition MS to Support Standards
Thursday August 12th, 1999
... then sign your name to the petition by sending an email from this page."
With Microsoft's posturing regarding messaging standards recently, you might have forgotten that Internet Explorer is not yet standards compliant. Microsoft, in fact, has yet to commit to full standards compliance.
It took the WSP nine months, but they seem to have finally gotten around to petitioning Microsoft on this issue (as you may recall, they petitioned mozilla.org last year).
Now if they could only petition the W3C to revamp their faulty standards process. The W3C could start by creating a certification process for browsers. A standard isn't a standard if there isn't some body enforcing the standard and giving its certification. Would you buy a bike helmet that wasn't approved by a standards body? A car with seatbelts that didn't meet safety standards? A TV that wasn't certifiably able to interpret the signal coming into it?
The W3C could then follow up by creating a verifiable implementation of the standard themselves, instead of forcing the browser makers to spend countless hours and dollars working through vagaries and inconsistencies in the "finalized" spec. (I have seen indication of this at times in the mozilla forums - I'd love it if a developer would speak up and give us a concrete example or two). Seeing as there is no longer a browser "market" - other than the incidental revenues browsers can draw in from portal sites - it seems silly to force browser makers to shoulder the burden of winnowing the standards specifications.
What do you think? Is it time for more fundamental changes in the web standards process? Let us know what you think in the talkback forum.
#18 Okay, I sent it
Friday August 13th, 1999 8:38 PM
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Okay, I sent the thing, but I don't think it will work. M$ has made it evident they intend to fully integrate "Internet technologies" into their OSs for the future, and I think the branded IE is on its way out as a result -- it works against what they tried to prove in court, for one thing. In fact, I think this is whyt M$ shipped IE5 in such lousy shape. They don't care, it's all about their next OS now that AOL owns Netscape. The whole point was to waste Netscape and when they couldn't charge $40 for IE (they tried, I've seen the box), they made it free and we all know the rest.
M$ would like nothing more than to make the Internet a Windows proprietary feature, and I think they'll have to be hog-tied to support standards that work against that goal.
But I sent the letter, because it can't hurt to try, I guess.