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Quiz Microsoft's IE Team Leader 414

Posted by Roblimo
from the man-in-the-hot-seat dept.
About as timely an interview as you can get: Microsoft released Internet Explorer 7 last week, and today we're gathering questions for IE team general manager Dean Hachamovitch. As usual, please follow Slashdot interview rules when posting or moderating questions. We'll publish Dean's answers verbatim as soon as he replies.
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Quiz Microsoft's IE Team Leader

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  • by LiquidCoooled (634315) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:01AM (#16547378) Homepage Journal
    Do you prefer Internet Explorer or Firefox?
  • How about this... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by also-rr (980579) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:02AM (#16547388) Homepage
    Would you like to make available IE on other operating systems?
  • CSS (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Beuno (740018) <(argentina) (at) (gmail.com)> on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:04AM (#16547408) Homepage
    Why did you go half way implementing CSS instead of fully supporting standards all other browsers have for some time now.
    • Re:CSS (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:08AM (#16547518)
      Does the IE roadmap include at any point 100% W3C compatibility, or are there features in the standard that you do not ever intend on supporting?
      • Re:CSS (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Bogtha (906264) on Monday October 23, 2006 @04:46PM (#16552502)

        What on earth is "100% W3C compatibility"? The W3C is an organisation, not a specification. They have published hundreds of specifications. No software would implement the lot, nobody would even want to.

        You are asking a nonsensical question. A better question would be whether they plan on complete support for specific specifications, such as HTML 4.01, HTTP 1.1, CSS 2.1, DOM 2, SVG 1.1, etc.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by rsd (194962)
        Does the IE roadmap include at any point 100% W3C compatibility, or are there features in the standard that you do not ever intend on supporting?

        Better yet.

        Is there a roadmap for future versions of IE?
        What can we expect from IE7 updates (just bug fixes)?
        Will we have to wait another 5+ years for standards update?

    • by Petersko (564140) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:15AM (#16547616)
      "Why did you go half way implementing CSS instead of fully supporting standards all other browsers have for some time now."

      I believe that NO browser fully supports CSS. Am I wrong in this assumption? Even if you're asking them to support the standards to the same level as all other browsers the implementation would still be incomplete.

      There's a built-in derogatory slant to your question. I believe that IE supports more than 50% of CSS standards, which would mean they went further than half-way. Your choice of words is subtly antagonistic.

      It's not a "Have you quit beating your wife" question, but neither is it a suitable one for a serious discussion.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Bromskloss (750445)
        There's a built-in derogatory slant to your question.
        Of course it is!
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Your choice of words is subtly antagonistic.

        Perhaps that is because Microsoft is a convicted predatory monopolist with a vested interest in anti-interoperability. When the anti-Microsoft conspiracy theories always end up being right on the money, maybe there really is a conspiracy going on.

        • by Petersko (564140) on Monday October 23, 2006 @01:59PM (#16549980)
          "Perhaps that is because Microsoft is a convicted predatory monopolist with a vested interest in anti-interoperability. When the anti-Microsoft conspiracy theories always end up being right on the money, maybe there really is a conspiracy going on."

          We have a choice. We can either ask questions that are antagonistic, and hope some of our fellow slashdotters will pat us on the back for MS-bashing, or we can ask questions that have a hope of receiving an enlightening response from the representative of Microsoft.
          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            by syousef (465911)
            Given your odds of receiving anything other than marketing speak from the MS rep, I'll go with number 1 MS-bashing please. And I'll have the side order of fries with that please. And a coke. Gotta have a drink.
    • Re:CSS (Score:5, Insightful)

      by LordEd (840443) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:23AM (#16547744)
      A better question: Are you aware that no matter what answers you give here, they will never satisfy the anti-Microsoft Slashdot crowd?
      • by rs232 (849320) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:31AM (#16547890)
        "A better question: Are you aware that no matter what answers you give here, they will never satisfy the anti-Microsoft Slashdot crowd?"

        Why do you assume that pro Open Source equates with anti-Microsoft

        was Re:CSS
      • Re:CSS (Score:5, Informative)

        by AKAImBatman (238306) * <akaimbatman AT gmail DOT com> on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:42AM (#16548038) Homepage Journal
        Are you aware that no matter what answers you give here, they will never satisfy the anti-Microsoft Slashdot crowd?

        It's difficult to speak for everyone, but I can give my own opinion on your question.

        I used to like IE5. Whether I disliked Microsoft or not, it was a superior browser in its day. The problem is, that the standards that Microsoft helped create all those years ago are not actually supported by Microsoft today. To use the example I pointed out in my own question, IE's lack of DOM 2 Events support means that there is absolutely no way to write DHTML code that works in both IE and Firefox. Yet, I can easily write code that works in Firefox, Safari, and Opera.

        Is there any reason for this dichotomy? Yes and no. Code can be made to work across the major non-IE browsers, because they all provide at least basic support for the W3C standards. IE has its own attachEvent() model that is (obviously) incompatible at a code level, and subtly incompatible at the behavior level. All that microsoft needs to do is to lay a parallel API that supports the W3C standard, and I would be a happy fellow. Yet they haven't done that, won't do that, and I have NO IDEA WHY.

        So I continue to write code that works in Firefox, Safari, and Opera, then special patches to make it work in IE. From where I'm sitting, I just want the problem to go away. If Microsoft fixes their browser, then I'll be happy. If Microsoft can't do that, then I will carry the "Down With IE!" torch until their browser is irrelevant in the market. Then I'll also be happy.

        Basically, my web browser opinion is not one based on my feelings about Microsoft. I just want a market were I can target a single standard is all. If Microsoft abuses their Web Browser monopoly to stand in the way of that, then it is my duty as a web developer* to help smash that monopoly.

        * What happened to the "Developers, developers, developers" jingle, hmm? Are we important, or aren't we?
    • Re:CSS (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Ant P. (974313) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:43AM (#16548062) Homepage
      A better question:

      Do you have any plans to support CSS 2.1 *when it's finished*?
    • Re:CSS (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Admin_Jason (1004461) on Monday October 23, 2006 @01:00PM (#16549236) Homepage
      Throwing percentages and numbers around are dangerous questions that will either not be moderated up or even if they are, and they are selected for questioning to IE developers, will likely be dismissed as arbitrary. It's better to ask in terms of generalities, so my suggestion would be something along the lines of the following:

      Browser comeptition is likely to continue in the marketplace, and as such, the feature sets of browsers will vary in order to appeal to a certain user base. Firefox has become something of the de facto standard for developers, to the extent that many web designers follow the practice of "design with FF in mind" while adding scripting and such to correct for what are commonly referred to as IE tweaks. Given this environment, there are 5 germane questions to ask:

      1. Does the Microsoft vision for IE7 place it in comeptition with Firefox as the browser of choice for developers?

      2. If so, what feature sets will IE7 have that can compete with Firefox and the open source community, and will those features include increased recognition and compliance with W3C standards?

      3. Often times I find myself opening IE for simply Microsoft functions that I otherwise cannot do in my browser of choice. Will cross-based browser support ever occur for common Microsoft functions like Windows and Office updates?

      4. As IE7 goes public as an update for those in a post-Windows 2000 environment, are there plans to make this upgrade available for businesses that still rely on those features of the Windows 2000 family of clients and servers?

      5. Finally, as some businesses rely on certain functionalities embedded in IE6 that are no longer there in IE7, are there plans to allow for dual instances of IE6 and IE7 in the future to allow for software and program compatability for businesses and their 3rd party vendors?
      • Re:CSS (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Aqualung812 (959532) on Monday October 23, 2006 @02:16PM (#16550184)
        4. As IE7 goes public as an update for those in a post-Windows 2000 environment, are there plans to make this upgrade available for businesses that still rely on those features of the Windows 2000 family of clients and servers?

        Please add this one to the list if the others do not make it. I still do not understand ignoring W2k support with Firefox breathing down Microsoft's neck.

        So I can buy new hardware and new OS in order to get anti-phishing and tab support, or I can download Firefox for free???

  • Evil Plan? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dsginter (104154) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:04AM (#16547420)
    As someone who has developed for multiple browsers, it really seems like there is a secret ploy at Microsoft to keep IE relatively incompatible with other browsers.

    Is this purposeful? If not, what is the reason?
  • IE's design goals (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Tet (2721) <slashdot AT astradyne DOT co DOT uk> on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:05AM (#16547454) Homepage Journal
    I've seen it mentioned (by Chris Wilson, amongst others) that IE7 was never going to pass the ACID2 tests when it shipped. Although as a web developer, that's not a situation I'm particularly pleased about, I'm mostly OK with it. I can appreciate that some aspects of the browsing experience will be propritized above others. However, I don't think I've ever seen a clear statement from Microsoft that 100% HTML and CSS compliance is even a goal. Can you comment on that?

    Is it your goal to render a standards compliant website correctly in all cases, or are you just aiming to implement those parts of the spec that are used by the majority of your customers? Naturally, I can understand prioritizing the things that are hitting your customers above those that are rarely used in the real world, but part of the reason the some of them aren't used in the real world is down to lack of browser support. I find it incredibly frustrating that some of my site layouts have to be butchered just to get them to work in the commonly used browsers. If IE fails to render a compliant page according to the spec, can you commit to actively tracking it as a bug with a view to fixing it in a future release of IE, even if it only affects a handful of people?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:06AM (#16547462)
    Why are you so gay? And why do you allow IE to destroy the fucking internet?
    • by Petersko (564140) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:18AM (#16547672)
      "Why are you so gay? And why do you allow IE to destroy the fucking internet?"

      This is an important question. We don't want people to view the average slashdotter as able to participate in a calm, reasonable discussion. We need to be viewed as zealots, collectively frothing at the mouth.

      I'd even like to see this question include just for humour.
      • Re:MOD PARENT UP! (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Bromskloss (750445) <auxiliary.addres ... acy@gmail . c om> on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:35AM (#16547944)
        We don't want people to view the average slashdotter as able to participate in a calm, reasonable discussion.
        Actually, I can understand outbursts like grand parent, seeing how the opposing force (Microsoft) slimily smiles and puts forward their arguments in a way that, to an uneducated person, might seem reasonable. Politicians seem to be a frequent target, since having them take the right desicions means better business for Microsoft, thought it to the rest of us means less choice, less freedom and worse technology. Heh, the feeling you get is that if they were to decide freely, we wouldn't be allowed to run whatever software we like, particularly not operating systems! That causes frustration, you know.
  • It has been widly know that IE, Firefox, and others all behave differently when it comes to CSS compliance/compatibility. Since new incompatabilities are found every day, how will microsoft respond to these incompatibilities? Will it be possible to get updates weekly to address these issues for us developers that like to play by the rules of CSS and HTML and prefer strict mode vs quirky?
  • A question (Score:5, Interesting)

    by also-rr (980579) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:06AM (#16547466) Homepage
    Would you like to see a universal architecture so that all rendering engines* worked in all web browsers, and all plugins** worked with all rendering engines? *Gecko, mshtml etc **Free and non-free - flash, mplayer and the like
    • Re:A question (Score:5, Interesting)

      by jonasj (538692) on Monday October 23, 2006 @01:28PM (#16549586)
      There is such a standard [wikipedia.org] for plugins, and Opera, Safari, Konqueror and all Mozilla-based browsers support it. Microsoft used to support it, but an update included in SP 2 for IE 5.5 removed support in favor of their own ActiveX-based plugin architecture, hoping that the added work needed to maintain two versions of their plugins would cause plugin makers to drop support for other browsers than IE. Who said abuse of monopoly power?
  • Prediction: (Score:5, Funny)

    by Atlantis-Rising (857278) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:07AM (#16547486) Homepage
    90% of the questions posted by slashdot will fall into one of two categories (or maybe both): 1) Why is Microsoft the Evil Empire and what are you doing to stop this (like using Firefox) and 2) What the fuck is up with your CSS support, dude?
    • Re:Prediction: (Score:5, Informative)

      by Roblimo (357) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:20AM (#16547712) Homepage Journal
      I'll add another prediction: That lots of people won't read and follow this note in the Slashdot Interview FAQ [slashdot.org]:

      You can ask as many questions as you'd like!

      But please, only ask one question per submitted comment.

      You can ask a compound (multi-part) question, but if you make your question so complicated that no one's sure what you're asking, it's less likely to be moderated up. If you have several burning questions, take a minute to organize your thoughts and separate them into multiple comments.


      - Robin
  • Interface (Score:5, Interesting)

    by techmuse (160085) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:07AM (#16547492)
    The new version of IE makes it much harder to work with certain critical aspects of the browser. While I like some aspects of the new browser, some of the interface changes make it much more difficult to work with, and this will keep me firmly in the Firefox camp for now. For example, bookmarks now require many more clicks to access, especially if you use links nested in folders. Also, most interface elements can not be moved around as was previously possible (and is currently possible in Firefox.) The menu bar itself is hidden, and when exposed, appears in the middle of the browser controls! Why go to so much trouble to make essential elements of the program difficult for users to access?
    • Re:Interface (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Twanfox (185252) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:57AM (#16548264)
      I second this inquiry wholeheartedly. The new layout deviates from standard Windows UI design (menu bar at top, always) and doesn't even allow you to resort to your own needs. This has made me, in the 3 days I've had IE7 on my machine, contemplate removal of the app and a return to IE6 despite it's outdated features.
    • Re:Interface (Score:4, Informative)

      by jmyers (208878) on Monday October 23, 2006 @12:19PM (#16548598)

      Agreed, the UI for IE7 is strange. If this is a hint of Vista I expect Mac and Linux will pick up a few desktop users afer the release.

      FYI this reg setting will move the menu bar to the top.

      [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Toolbar\WebBrowser]
      "ITBar7Position"=dword:00000001
  • by justinbach (1002761) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:07AM (#16547494) Homepage
    How important is it to Microsoft to ensure that IE passes acknowledged tests of compliane (i.e. Acid2) at the cost of sacrificing newer and possibly more exciting/efficient proprietary technologies?
  • Best/Future Features (Score:5, Interesting)

    by x_MeRLiN_x (935994) * on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:08AM (#16547498) Homepage
    What are the best features of IE7 that sets it above the competition, what features are perhaps lacking and are you currently working on adding these?
  • My Question (Score:5, Interesting)

    by B3ryllium (571199) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:08AM (#16547502) Homepage
    Well, I can't think of a real Slashdot-headed question to ask, so I'll go for the entertaining rather than socially relevant:

    Presumably, throughout this development process for IE7, your team has had their nose to the grind-wheel, so to speak. What sort of things did you do to chill out and relax? Were there any in-office perks, like pool tables or whatnot? And were you actually all in the same office, or did some members of the team have to telecommute from far-off lands, like Oregon?
  • IE8? (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:08AM (#16547510)
    If you adopt FireFox 2.0 as IE8, your boss would be impressed with how much you improved the product in a very short time. My question is: would you take the extra time to remove CSS features from IE8? Thank you and God Bless.
  • IE7 release time (Score:5, Interesting)

    by BeeBeard (999187) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:08AM (#16547516)
    Why did IE7 take such a long time to release after IE6?
  • DOM 2 Events (Score:5, Interesting)

    by AKAImBatman (238306) * <akaimbatman AT gmail DOT com> on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:10AM (#16547536) Homepage Journal
    One of the stated purposes of IE7 was to better support the W3C standards, and (presumably) to increase compatibility among W3C-compliant browsers. Yet despite multiple requests for DOM 2 Events support, the IE team decided to overlook this support [mozillazine.org]. Currently, IE is the only major browser lacking DOM Events support. Which is a major issue, as IE's attachEvent() design means that special code must be written for IE compatibility.

    As someone who's been forced into using runtime patches (example [lachy.id.au]) to increase IE's compatibility with DHTML code, I feel compelled to ask: Why has the IE team ignored this critical standard?
    • There is a painful lack of support for not only the DOM 2 Events, but also for several other significant parts of the DOM specification.

      Some issues I've personally encountered, several of which I hit on a regular basis:

      * Namespaces are completely absent from IE's DOM implementation (createElementNS, getAttributeNS, etc. functions simply do not exist).
      * Prototyping of DOM elements is impossible without using proprietary HTC behaviours.
      * Tables that are created dynamically will not appear unless elements are
  • by jellomizer (103300) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:12AM (#16547556)
    Doing some WebSite development I found that with IE 6 (I havent been able to test IE 7 Yet) I always had to wander away from the standards and the only reason I have gotten is that MS just doesn't like them. Is IE 7 going to make sure that they follow the stands much more closely so when I make HTML and I test it in IE, Firefox, Safari and Opera they all look the same, I normally get the Last 3 to work without much fighting but IE always decided to do it differently. Giving us New Windows Only features is not useful for the developers, but following the standards is. As well our custerms weither they know it or not like it better when we follow the standards (Less junk and warning messages, Or misaligned stuff).
  • Simple questions (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Billosaur (927319) * <.ten.enilnotpo. .ta. .rehtorgw.> on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:12AM (#16547560) Journal

    IE has a dominating command of the market, although Firefox is slowly making inroads, due to innovations such as tabbed browsing that IE has had to incorporate to maintain that command. But where are the IE innovations? Why can't the IE team get ahead of the curve on Firefox? Is there anything you consider an innovation that is unique to IE that would plausibly be something the browser market would have to incorporate to stay competitive?

  • by linuxci (3530) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:12AM (#16547570)
    One of the biggest complaints [browserden.co.uk] about IE7 is that it does not obey the standard user interface guidelines for Windows XP. As an update that'll be pushed to users automatically [msdn.com] next month do you not consider it a bad idea to break platform conventions?


    There is a workaround [enhanceie.com] that involves editing the registry to get the menu bar in the correct place but why is this not implemented as part of toolbar customisation?

  • by BeeBeard (999187) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:16AM (#16547634)
    What do you make of all this pro-Firefox, anti-IE digital jihadism?
  • IE7 + Win2k (Score:5, Interesting)

    by TubeSteak (669689) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:17AM (#16547642) Journal
    Why haven't you guys hacked IE7 to run on Win2k minus the WinXP SP2-dependant security features?

    It's not like it'd be any less secure than IE6 on Win2k.
  • by HaeMaker (221642) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:17AM (#16547660) Homepage
    As I recall, Microsoft licensed SpyGlass browser code as the basis for Internet Explorer. Is there any of it left, or have you finally rewritten all the IE code?
  • IE as Open Source (Score:2, Interesting)

    by GodWasAnAlien (206300)
    The base of Open Source software is constantly rising.

    A software company can either decide to add value to that base of software,
    or fight the tide and compete directly with it.

    Will Microsoft, at some point decide to open source a few things, like IE, that have been equalled or surpased by open source?

    Or will Microsoft instead try to "compete" with such software via other means: legislative, marketing, proprietary lock in?

  • ...when will you come to SVG?
    • Or a follow up, now that Adobe has decided not to maintain their SVG viewer is there a chance of getting that code into IE mainline? I'm betting Adobe would sell it for cheap.

      I do consider the lack of SVG support a critical failing of IE7. SVG is a huge step towards making the web a more beautiful place. The compeating standard is Flash, which doesn't help Microsoft. It would seem that adopting SVG would help Microsoft's design suite.

      Thanks. Ted.
  • My shot (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Njovich (553857) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:19AM (#16547694)
    What do you consider the greatest weakness of Firefox?
  • IE 8 (Score:5, Interesting)

    by diegocgteleline.es (653730) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:19AM (#16547706)
    A simple question: What are you planning to implement for the next IE version, be it IE 8 or IE 7.5 or whatever?
  • A question for Dean Hachamovitch: What feetures did the Firefox developers borrow from IE7.
  • by Control Group (105494) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:25AM (#16547786) Homepage
    I realize, of course, that any answer you give to this question may not be valid a couple years down the road, but as of now:

    Does the release of IE7 mark the beginning of a more aggressive development/release cycle for Internet Explorer? That is, we are all aware of various aspects of CSS, for example, that are not currently supported in IE (though kudos on all the progress in this direction you've made): can we expect updates to IE, either as service packs, point releases, or new versions, that will provide better standards support in the relatively near future? Or will we be limited to security fixes for the foreseeable future, as with IE6?
  • IE7 and Vista (Score:5, Interesting)

    by epuidokas (1017066) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:25AM (#16547790)
    Did any new Windows Vista technologies influence the development of IE7?
  • IE vs. Firefox (Score:3, Interesting)

    by thoriphes (984506) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:26AM (#16547802)
    Besides matching some of the features in Firefox (ie. tabbed browsing), what are some others to look forward to in IE7 that an avid Firefox user such as myself would find useful?
  • Moo (Score:5, Funny)

    by Chacham (981) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:26AM (#16547822) Homepage Journal
    Is "Hachamovitch" your real name, or a nickname for how IE is put together?
  • Web Development (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Do you or does anyone else on the IE team run multiple versions of IE on the same machine for testing purposes? Do you use the DLL hack that's been published here or some other method?
  • Security (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Seto89 (986727) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:28AM (#16547844)
    One of IE7's revolutionary features was supposed to be security, although it took less than 24 hours for Secunia to post [secunia.com] an advisory about a security hole. Moreover, the bug seemed to be carried over from as early as IE5.5 [secunia.com]. What approach did you take to improve browser's security, and how come the vulnerabilities have been carried over?
  • Can I see your implementation of a bubble sort?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:30AM (#16547868)
    Do you want to continue running scripts on this page?
  • How about this.... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Toreo asesino (951231) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:31AM (#16547896) Journal
    Let's pretend for a moment that Internet Explorer isn't the default web-browser built into Windows and instead, users are presented with a choice on first login (e.g. a message asking 'How would you like to browse the internet? MSIE, Firefox, Opera').

    Would you expect IE to become as dominant as it is now if users had to specifically choose it over another?

    Ignoring the slight impracticalities, if so (I'm guessing you do), on what basis would this be?
  • by jonwil (467024) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:32AM (#16547904)
    How does microsoft choose which bits of the CSS and DOM standard to implement?
  • by KJSwartz (254652) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:32AM (#16547910)
    While upgrading to IE7, I noticed that IE6 had to be removed before Windows could install IE7. Does this mean that Internet Explorer is not so tightly bundled into Microsoft/OS that it can not be removed in the name of competition? Also, is the complete IE7 API available for license and fee-free?
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by CastrTroy (595695)
      With so many people using different versions of IE, why not make it possible to install 2 different version of the browser, especially for the sake of web developers? What options are open to developers who now want to code against IE 7, but don't want to abandon users of IE6. Are the only options to have 2 computers, or 1 computer running a virtual machine?
  • by kseise (1012927) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:33AM (#16547924)
    Would you like to install SearchBar Helper? Select Yes to Close this Window.
  • Will IE ever support event capturing?
  • Browser integration (Score:5, Interesting)

    by solevita (967690) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:34AM (#16547936)
    We've been told in the past that the reason that IE was so deeply embedded (to the point that it could not be removed, as we were told) in to the operating system was to improve the online experience of a Windows PC. With Web 2.0 firmly in place, the desire for a web browser integrated in to the operating system is, some would say, greater than ever.

    Where do you stand on this issue? How central to the XP and Vista experience will IE7 become?
  • What about the client-side session and persistent storage (like in Firefox 2) ? See http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/ #scs-client-side [whatwg.org]
  • IE 7+ (Score:4, Interesting)

    by wwrafter (906101) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:44AM (#16548066)
    First, thank you for the efforts the team has already put in. I'm pretty sure that the two features that will provide the biggest benefit to developers, and by extension the users, namely better CSS (hopefully some CSS3) support and moving to the W3 standard event model, will be addressed in the next version of IE. My two part question: Do you have any ETA on the next version, and is there any possibility of adding pieces to IE7 via Windows Update? I recognize changing the event model is not really an option here, but adding support for say border-radius or opacity css support seems like it would be a fairly innocuous change.
  • by srothroc (733160) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:47AM (#16548118) Homepage
    You have implemented a new GUI and new security features; these have been examined, praised, and lambasted on just about every tech site out there, so those of us "in the know" are aware of all of the changes and their implications. You also have resources like the quick reference sheet [microsoft.com] available to help new users of IE7. These are all well and good, but they'll be of no use to anyone who does not know about them or how to use them.

    What I want to know is this: how will you spread word of the new changes and features to neighbor Joe or Grandma Smith -- will you rely on word-of-mouth from the technocracy, or do you trust that your features are transparent enough that they will easily understand the difference between, say, types of SSL certificates provided by sites?
  • Project Management? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by RingDev (879105) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:48AM (#16548138) Homepage Journal
    What type of project management processes and structures did you impliment in order to keep the vast number of people and resources invovled with this project in line? How do you feel about those processes now that it's done, and what would you have done differently?

    -Rick
  • by miyako (632510) <miyako&gmail,com> on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:49AM (#16548148) Homepage Journal
    IE7, like IE6, renders a lot of pages significantly differently than the other main HTML rendering engines available (Geko, KHTML, and Opera). At the same time, IE7 requires WGA to run - so that applications like Wine are unable to run it. This means that web developers who are using Linux and Mac OS X will have an extremely difficult time testing their sites with IE7. Was this intentional? If so what was the reason behind it (do you want to force developers to move to Windows for web development, or simply set IE aside as something different that isn't a regular browser and must be specifically developed for), and if not how do you plan to rectify the situation?
  • ie7 and runas (Score:3, Interesting)

    by jd142 (129673) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:51AM (#16548182) Homepage
    Why does IE7 no longer work with the runas command? What was the thinking behind "breaking" the runas feature?

    Some background for people who aren't familiar with runas:

    Sometimes I need to browse the network as an administrator while logged in as a non-admin. With IE6, I can type "runas /user:domain\username cmd" to launch a command prompt and then run c:\program files\internet explorer\iexplore and then browse to \\servername\sharename as my admin user. Very handy when I need to move a file from one user's area to another's.

    But after I installed IE7 final on my test machine, this no longer works. Running ie7 as an admin user, whether by right clicking on the exe and picking run as or running it from a cmd line launched as a admin user, no longer let's me browse network shares or local drives as an admin user. This is really frustrating.

  • by jonwil (467024) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:53AM (#16548224)
    Does microsoft have plans for an IE feedback form similar to what they have now for Visual Studio?
    Having such a feedback form would mean that people could post things like "Support " or "Fix issue where adds an extra pixel to the border" or whatever and then the IE team could investigate them (just like the Visual Studio team does with the Visual Studio feedback) and provide feedback such as "no, we cant fix this at this time" or "we will consider this for the next release" or "we have investigated this and have a fix already" or "here is a workaround" or whatever else it is. If there was a vote system so people can vote for what they think is important, microsoft could use that information to see how many people want which features (and therefore which features it makes the most sense to implement).
  • Release schedule? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Val314 (219766) on Monday October 23, 2006 @11:54AM (#16548226)
    Are you planning to do more regular updates (IE8/9/10/...)? maybe 1 year for between releases?
    Will you release those versions for all Windows versions that have mainstream support or just the latest Windows?
  • Zoom in IE7 (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Instine (963303) on Monday October 23, 2006 @12:01PM (#16548316)
    Are you ging to fix the zoom in IE7. It currently hasmany bugs, some of them are a hindrence to accessible screen readers (usually used by visually impaired users). I personal reported the problem with getElementfromPoint not getting the correct element went zoomed (javascript) and actually got a reply from the Manager in charge of the unit dealing with the zoom, sayng he was on the case. That was Beta1. Since then the issue has morphed slightly, but never gone away. PLEASE fix, as it can/is causeing real problems for screen reader users, and producers. e.g. : this [jimbarter.co.uk]
  • by Glog (303500) on Monday October 23, 2006 @12:01PM (#16548324)
    Given the highly negative feedback provided for the User Interface of the IE7 BETA releases why did you decide to stick with the same format for the final release?
  • by CmdrGravy (645153) on Monday October 23, 2006 @12:18PM (#16548566) Homepage
    Given that you are not planning on selling IE 7 and the fact that there are already other browsers on the market which can allow Windows users to experience the web fully why is Microsoft investing so much time and effort in continuing the development of IE ?
  • more questions (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Tumbleweed (3706) * on Monday October 23, 2006 @12:21PM (#16548606)
    Oh, and what was the reason behind this particular release date? Was it to beat FF2, to make it in time for some Vista requirement?

    And will there be minor feature enhancements/bug fixes before the next major release? The PNG color space problem comes to mind - fixing this in a minor release shouldn't break anything else.
  • by Apocalypse111 (597674) on Monday October 23, 2006 @12:25PM (#16548684) Journal
    You may not have any idea about this one, but I figure I'll ask anyways. In IE6, a tag was required in the html to enable standards-compliant mode (which still wasn't, but that's beside the point). Why was this not enabled by default?
  • by reidconti (219106) on Monday October 23, 2006 @12:30PM (#16548786)
    Originally, Microsoft claimed that IE7 would only be available with Vista, and would not be made available for older versions of Windows.

    As it turns out, the release of IE7 separately is an about-face on this matter.

    While it might take away one advantage of Vista over sticking with XP, I think the choice of a free upgrade is a good thing for the user.

    Can you speak to the pro and con arguments that came out in deciding to release IE7 separate from Vista?

    Thanks.
  • by Chabil Ha' (875116) on Monday October 23, 2006 @01:29PM (#16549606)

    This past summer Håkon Wium Lie was interviewed on /. and my question was selected [slashdot.org] concerning IE7's glaring lack of full CSS support. Why is it that MS has avoided meeting at least the ACID2 spec for CSS in order to bring some semblance of comformity for developers?

    Håkon Wium Lie's response [slashdot.org] to these questions is boiled down to the fact that you do have the talent and resources to fix these issues and he says that "the fundamental reason, I believe, is that standards don't benefit monopolists" like MS.

    How do you respond to his comments (the author of the CSS spec) and does MS have any near future plans to adhere to the existing CSS standard? If not, what would it take for MS to take a more proactive role in supporting it?

  • by MunkieLife (898054) on Monday October 23, 2006 @01:37PM (#16549712)
    Why is your "view source" feature so much worse than Firefox's?
  • rfc2782 support? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by 14CharUsername (972311) on Monday October 23, 2006 @01:52PM (#16549882)

    rfc2782 allows for DNS servers to return a list of ips to clients with info on priorities and weights. This would allow browsers to seamlessly switch to a backup server if the primary server went down, which would greatly improve website availability. Unfortunately, from what I can tell, there are no browsers out there that support this.

    Is there any possibility that IE will support this?

  • by markandrew (719634) on Monday October 23, 2006 @04:44PM (#16552484)
    this has been partly covered by other questions, but i figured a direct one just on this was important:

    i'm a web developer, and need to test web sites for both IE7 and IE6. Buying another PC isn't an option, and running virtualization software is a lot of effort (in many different ways) just to have two browsers installed. With that in mind, how would you recommend I go about testing sites in both browsers? Most solutions I've seen involve hacks which aren't guaranteed not to break certain things.

    Because of this issue, many sites are going to (visually) break in IE7 as soon as people update their browser. This isn't going to look good to most users, and could potentially send many of them running for an alternative which doesn't break the sites they like.

    If this dual setup is not easily possible now, will it be in the (near) future? And was this something that you considered when developing, and planning the release of, IE7?
  • Popular standing (Score:4, Interesting)

    by griblik (237163) on Monday October 23, 2006 @06:34PM (#16553788)
    I remember back when I started web development, Netscape (3|4) was the browser everyone loved to hate. It was the one you had to bend everything to fit for (resize fix, anyone?). IE4, on the other hand, was fantastic. You could make it do all sorts of cool things really easily. I thought it was the best toy in the shop.

    Today, IE is the browser that has people swearing blue murder because of the amount of effort it takes to make a page that works properly in the other browsers look correct in IE. As someone pretty high up in the dev team, does this bother you/niggle your professional pride? And perhaps more importantly, are there any plans to try to win back the affection of the web dev community?

    Personally, I think IE7 is a step in the right direction, but I think Netscape had to get to 7 or 8 before I started thinking it was a decent browser again - old hatreds die hard...

"There is nothing new under the sun, but there are lots of old things we don't know yet." -Ambrose Bierce

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