Internet Explorer 9 (Release Candidate) was made available on February 10th.
As of today, IE9 RC has already hit the two million download milestone.
Microsoft says that — after four developer-oriented preview releases — they’re acting on feedback, and that “the product has made progress on all fronts — performance and standards, user experience, and safety and privacy.”
As a developer, as with every release of Internet Explorer, I’m asking:
Is Microsoft finally up to scratch with its standards compliance?
Microsoft’s recent blog features a table that claims that Internet Explorer 9 RC shows the highest compliance with Web Standards against that of other stable versions of mainstream browsers.
However, Paul Rouget (a technology evangelist at Mozilla) has pointed out in his blog post that this table is based solely on Microsoft’s own test cases and does not compare IE9 RC against other pre-release versions of other browsers.
He claims: “IE9 is definitely better than IE8 and a step in the right direction, but I don’t believe it to be a truly modern browser…”.
He lists a lot of stuff that IE9 doesn’t support.
HTML5 is not complete, and so the IE9 team are being careful what they implement. Rob Mauceri, Principal Group Program Manager of IE told Ars Technica, “Our approach to it is, let’s really get the standard right”.
IE9 does give Web developers a richer set of tools for building complex interactive sites:
- Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG)
- Canvas bitmap graphics
- HTML5 video and audio elements.
- Many parts of CSS3
- WOFF web fonts
- ECMAScript 5 and many parts of DOM level 2 and Level 3
So IE9 may still not be as standards compliant as other browsers, but I welcome the improvements.
The top features I’m most interested in are:
F12 Developer Tools
I’d recommend you try it. IE9 is available from www.beautyoftheweb.com