16 June 2009

Boycott Opera

This is a link to the new Boycott Opera campaign which a Windows user group has started due to Opera's suit again Microsoft.

The most interesting thing on the page at the above link is that IE is listed as a great alternative to Opera. Having to use IE everyday at work I would disagree but that is just a personal opinion!

Now I don't think people realise why companies are going after Microsoft about the issue of bundling IE with windows. This argument has been raging for a few years now and I think that the main point is that Windows is shipped by default on probably over 95% of all new pc's. Microsoft where the "in the right place at the right time" company that brokered deals with the hardware suppliers to ensure that their operating system was the one that was shipped and ensured it was in the hardware suppliers favour to do so. At the time (once they had dealt with IBM) there was no competition.

Now there is some competition. Both in the OS market and in the software market. We only have to see how Microsoft likes to spread untrue and unfounded rumours about Linux and how they attempt to gain a grip on markets (Office document format?). Unfortunately, IT users, directors, developers etc are all finding that Microsoft is not the only solution but rather there are cheaper and better alternatives available. Although sometimes Microsoft is the answer there is no denying.

Internet Explorer is not the best browser in the market place. IE attempted to do to the web what J++ was going to do to Java, make the target language (or in this case web sites) Microsoft specific. Luckily for the world, the internet was to far advanced by the time Bill and Steve decided they better pay it some attention and standards had been developed to ensure that it remained a "Standard and Open platform".

Now I read IE 9 will be the most standard compliant browser ever. As I read IE 8 was going to be. IE 8 has had to ship with a compatibility mode to ensure it can render pre IE 8 pages correctly. This is to rectify the issues that IE 1 through 7 caused in it's rendering engine.

I have two main thoughts on the whole subject. The first is that I applaud Opera for taking the stance. It could have settled and from what I read Microsoft wanted to settle quickly and quitley. However, what Opera are really fighting for is not so much IE to not be bundled with Windows but rather the strangle hold on the entire OS market that Windows has.

My other main thought is perhaps if Microsoft where to provide a true standards compatibly browser and adhere to standards rather than try and dictate and "own" all technology available the perhaps Opera and other browser developers would have no need to have issues with IE as all pages would render equal.

Now if only IE would move to webkit.

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