IE5.5: First Look

Friday December 3rd, 1999

I've done some preliminary CSS testing of IE5.5 (available through Specifically I ran IE 5.5 through the battery of David Baron's CSS tests, and found some interesting results. IE 5.5's CSS support has undergone very little change from 5.0, and some regressions were noticable. IE 5.5 seems to pass test 5.3 (CSS2 Universal Selector) that IE 5.0 did not, but it fails two tests in section 6.4.4 (Parsing Test 4 and Test 5) that IE 5.0 apparently passed. There was one other that *may* have passed (9.1.2) where 5.0 failed, and one test in 10.7 *may* have failed where 5.0 passed, but I can't determine these for a certainty. Finally, IE 5.5 still does not pass the Box Acid Test.

According to MS's "What's New in Internet Explorer 5.5" page, IE 5.5 handles more "CSS styles" such as first-letter and first-line, but they don't go into any more detail.

From these results, I'm wondering if MS is giving up completely on significant advances in the CSS support in their current rendering engine. IE on the Mac is supposedly being developed to utilize a new rendering engine, codename "Tasman". Maybe Microsoft is planning something similar for their 6.0 Windows version.

In any event it does not look like the next version of IE will have significant CSS improvements as many hoped and expected.

#24 Flame baiting Troll

by Anon

Friday December 3rd, 1999 8:13 PM

You are replying to this message

Despite the fact that the original article wasn't MS bashing, but expressed genuine dissapointment that IE5.5 didn't improve, you go on to try and piss off alternitive OS users. I sincerly doubt that any additional features compatability will be added to IE5.5, and to call it Alpha is highly deceptive as to my knowledge MS has never previously equated "Developer Preview" with "Alpha." As far as Mozilla being late, late for what? It will be done when it is done, people are working dilligently on it, I don't know what can be achived by complaining about its lack of completion. The thought that MS is going to take over the world because Mozilla isn't out yet is stupid. If MS can take over marketshare with a (qualifiably) superior product, why can't Mozilla do the same. Of course in order to do so, it must be better. That takes time, I'm willing to wait. In the mean time I continue to build cross compatable sites and curse IE and NS for thier quirks and pray that Moz' gets it right. For that matter I hope IE does too. Also, calling someone who believes in an alternate OS a fanatic is so lame, you want to use Windows, good for you. Just don't shove your religion up my ass. Bakafish