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IE: deliberate bugs?

why does IE have such glaringly obvious bugs that simply never get fixed?  For example, CSS rendering.  Now I understand that in IE the box model is broken, and maybe that's not so trivial, but what about simple things like borders?  IE renders borders specified as "dotted" in CSS as dashed.  Not only that, but scrolling the window will cause the dashes to change size and spacing, become inconsistent, run together, and basically look like crap.

Why in the world would they leave ugly bugs like this in the system?  Are they trying to discourage people using CSS in favor of some MS alternative?  Frontpage templates maybe?  Who knows.

Seriously though, it just seems malicious.  You can write a page that looks good in IE, or you can write a page that looks good in every other browser.  Trying to do both is a sure fire way to male pattern baldness (even if you're female, I bet).  So then you're left with the option of designing for 95% of the internet audience (the IE using sheep crowd), or the 5% of the internet audience with actually compliant browsers.

Anyway I suppose this is an obvious rant, but I laugh heartily at Microsoft fanboys who insist that it's not an intentional manipulation of the market, or that it's not made possible by an inexplicably tolerated monopoly.

</soap box>

muppet
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

I think actually the real reason is resources.  IE development wasn't paid attention to and only recently have they woken up a bit.

Even at the time 6.x was released CSS was still a minority because good CSS support was small and the need for that support was even less. 

Now with accessibility not just being a Good Thing but a very Bad Thing not to have and with browsers that do support CSS1 and 2 pretty well IE development has been kick started again.

Simon Lucy
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Why do you need a conspiracy?  All these other explanations are *possible* (I'm not saying any are true) too:

- They are too busy fixing higher priority bugs like security

or

- They don't have enough resources to get round to that one

or

- Whoever is in charge at MS of that bit, doesn't feel it is important

or

- The bit of code that handles that is a horrible mess, and fixing what looks like a trivial bug, is not

or

- The programmer working on that bit doesn't want to fix minor bugs until he's finished refactoring that bit

or

- Some prima donna believes his way, the way it is now, is the right way

or

- They are just an incompetent as everybody else, and some bugs slip thru the cracks again and again.

S. Tanna
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Who said conspiracy?  It's as simple as a high level manager at MS deciding that it's in their best interests to have IE be non compliant.  Since they own 95% of the desktop market, or around that, it would be to their detriment to create interoperable software.

No conspiracy, just business.  Shitty, malicious business, but business.

muppet
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Didn't you read that article that was linked in this forum a while ago about why MS never fixed bugs? It's a Mythical Man Month thing. Checking in a bug fix is never just checking in a bug fix, it's running it past a committee and can cost thousands of dollars.

www.MarkTAW.com
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

with some of the recent negative publicity surrounding gaping, unpatched security holes in IE, it may end up costing Microsoft lots more than that.

muppet
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

With regard to the statement about the choice of designing for 5% of the market or 95% of the market... this is simply not true.  A good web developer can generate a page that will look good in all browsers.  The typical method for this development is to design for a Gecko or KHTML browser and add facilities for IE's improper rendering.  It's not too difficult, and they are well documented.

As for the non-conformance to W3C specs, IE6 will render the correct box-model in Standards mode, but Standards mode brings other issues with it that render this option relatively undesirable.  Why does Microsoft allow their browser to render pages improperly?  Likely a resource issue.  Also, you never know how complicated the code for rendering the page might be.

Lou
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Yeah, the hidden cost of fixing bugs explains why some bugs don't get fixed, and it's a reasonable explanation in some cases - like the minor bug described in that article.

But in the case of IE?  I don't think so.  Microsoft are still actively advertising IE as the most powerful browser, and as the only browser that shows the web the way it's meant to be seen.  To do that, while ignoring critical weaknesses in its basic rendering - weaknesses which obviously can't be that difficult to fix, because a bunch of amateur GPL-smoking hippies working in their spare time have had no problem producing a renderer that doesn't suffer from them (I'm talking about KHTML, I know Gecko was mostly developed commercially) - well, to advertise IE as "best", while ignoring huge issues like that, can only be attributed to malice or stupidity, neither of which reflects particularly well on Microsoft.

Particularly not when they have demonstrated, with Office - and with IE 4, way back then - that they *are* capable of producing a better product than anyone else when they put their minds to it.

Iago
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

MS has obviously and deliberately starved IE development for years, including fixing obvious and crippling bugs. A compelling argument can be made that MS feels browser-based computing as a major threat towards their operating systems monopoly, and therefore has terminated all improvements to IE which would enable richer web user interfaces. In fact didn't Joel just write about that?

jz
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

+++With regard to the statement about the choice of designing for 5% of the market or 95% of the market... this is simply not true.  A good web developer can generate a page that will look good in all browsers.  The typical method for this development is to design for a Gecko or KHTML browser and add facilities for IE's improper rendering.  It's not too difficult, and they are well documented.+++

I like how you casually toss off "add facilities for IE's improper rendering."  Unless you're using a SEVERELY limitted subset of XHTML/CSS, you're going to spend AS MUCH TIME OR MORE coddling IE as you did writing the page template in the first place.

muppet
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

muppet might have time to code his pages for all browsers if he stopped his 24/7 complaining about MS.

The fact is, he has no clue what the internal business decisions are, and since it doesn't coincide with his own opinion, he writes them off as malicious and evil.

In fact, I can't remember one post of his that was constructive to this forum.  Only "I hate Bill".

He must think a lot of himself.

The muppets were cancelled years ago
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Errr... are you thinking of another muppet?  I hardly comment on Microsoft at all.  I could normally care less about their products or what they're doing with them.  When it comes to having to butcher and jury rig my web apps to cater to their broken shit, however, I speak up.

muppet
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

"He must think a lot of himself"

It's obvious from any one of his posts that he's a pompous, arrogant, egomaniac. 


Wednesday, August 04, 2004

And the simple fact is that I shouldn't HAVE to waste man hours on revamping a whole website worth of templates to make them work on IE after they've been written standards compliant. 

Maybe Microsoft's goal is to keep everybody so busy trying to be interoperable with their ubiquitous shit that they can't keep up, let alone compete.

muppet
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

""He must think a lot of himself"

It's obvious from any one of his posts that he's a pompous, arrogant, egomaniac.  "


It's obvious from any one of yours that you're too much of a coward to sign so much as a pseudonymn to your posts.

muppet
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

"Unless you're using a SEVERELY limitted subset of XHTML/CSS, you're going to spend AS MUCH TIME OR MORE coddling IE as you did writing the page template in the first place."

muppet,
maybe if you spent more than two hours a day doing actual work, and less time stroking your ego - complaining about bosses - declaring your supremacy over older developers and your coworkers - etc. you might get good enough to do your job better, rather than faster.  There is a whole community out there that can create websites that work on all browsers.

Management thinks you are a superstar, and you say management are idiots.  What does that tell you?
(1 + 1 = 2)

potshot
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

And you say you don't believe in conspiracies?

Come on, the explanation is very simple:  They knew of the bug, and the cost to fix outweighed the benefit.  How widespread were things like CSS 3 years ago, when such a decision was probably made?

Why not debate whether they should revisit that decision now that things like CSS is becoming more widespread, instead of spouting foul language at us all?

Conspiracy Anti-Theorist
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

I never declared myself supreme over older developers.  I just posted a deliberate troll posts full of counter-stereotypes.  Many older developers have a list of preconceived ideas about the younger set, so why can't I have mine?

If it were my job to create interoperable pages, I'd set to it with a fury, but it's not.  Sitting complacently, eating Microsoft's dogfood for them, and loyally asking them for more is a bit pathetic, don't you think?

Didn't you ever see all those after school specials about how the "cool" crowd isn't so cool?  That's what many of the folks on this forum remind me of.  You're the "cool kids".  A bunch of identity-less, directionless, ass-lickers eager to latch on to whoever the currently winning team is.  With "winning" being determined by whomever currently has the most toys.

And you think *I'm* in need of some introspection?

muppet
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

"And the simple fact is that I shouldn't HAVE to waste man hours on revamping a whole website worth of templates to make them work on IE after they've been written standards compliant. "

Well don't.  Tell your audience to use a different browser then.

sysadmin
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

sysadmin -

Thank you for the ridiculous ad hominem attack.

Next?

muppet
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

So when you say we're "a bunch of identity-less, directionless, ass-lickers", you don't mean it in the ad hominem sense, right?

the party has started
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Where have you been?  The rules don't apply to ME, fool.

muppet
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

And no, it's not in the ad hominem sense.  It's a sincere appraisal of anyone who toes the Microsoft party line like a blind zealot.

muppet
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

My sincere appraisal of Muppet is that of a douche bag.  But don't quote me on it!

Zooooooooooooom!
Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Guys... if you haven't figured out that Muppet is simply baiting you by now, then just read these last few posts.  Arguments against him are dismissed as fallacious (even if they're not).  Similar claims about him are met with condescension, sarcasm, and dismissal.

There are two possibilities: either Muppet is more bitter than anyone his age has any license being, or he's having a hearty laugh at your futile attempts to reason with his artificial persona.

He's a troll, plain and simple.  Trolls go away if you stop feeding them.  So stop responding to Muppet when he trolls, and all will be well.

The tail of the "g"
Thursday, August 05, 2004

Tail -

with all due respect (none), you've no idea how bitter I've got any license being.  If age is your single criteria, you've led a charmed life.  Why don't you go enjoy it quietly somewhere else and stop playing at being intelligent.

muppet
Thursday, August 05, 2004

Did you guys hear something? :)

The tail of the "g"
Friday, August 06, 2004

There is a lot of ranting and raving going on, but does anyone have a practical solution to dealing with obtuse, cryptic bugs? I am not using CSS but I am following a particular web page template that seems to work most of the time. There is one page that does not display properly in IE even though the code is identical to several other pages that work fine. I have broken the page worse in my attempts to fix it. Initially it was displaying two of three images and now it refuses to display any.

I cannot help but think that this is some deliberate bug that is acting in response to a keyword or a sophisticated image processing analysis of the image content. This may sound paranoid and certainly it is cynical, but as far as I can tell, the code is identical to all of the other pages that work fine. And of course, even the broken page works on all of the other browsers. But I need to fix it on IE. Can anyone help?

Brad Mells
Thursday, August 12, 2004

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