Monday, June 28th, 2010
Microsoft continues to impress with its developer preview releases for IE9. They went from a laggard in both performance and Web standards, to regrouping and doing some fantastic work in both regards.
The honourable PPK has detailed the leap forward with CSS (in between watching his Dutch team do well in the World Cup. Not that I am friggin jealous ;)
The sea of green on the CSS compat tables is fantastic news for the Web:
More on IE9 and CSS from PPK:
IE9 promises to be an excellent browser. Its CSS support is now at par with that of the other browsers — although each browser still has its specific areas where it performs less. But we cannot in good faith say that IE is behind the others any more.
There are only a very few declarations in my test that IE9 does not support. CSS columns, gradients,
text-strokeare the only ones, and the latter two are WebKit-only.
Even better news: Microsoft’s filters seem to have just disappeared from IE9. It supports normal opacity; no more filters required. Also, the gradient filter is gone, leaving IE (temporarily?) not supporting it.
Another golden oldie that got dropped is
cursor: hand, the MS proprietary alternative to
cursor: pointer. That’s not really important in practice (IE6 already supported both syntaxes), but it’s a powerful symbol of the changes that the IE team has wrought.
With so much excellence around I was almost glad when I found one single bug: IE9 doesn’t handle white-space: pre-line right. This bug will be fixed, though. It’s typically a minor point that crops up in a beta and is removed from the final product.
Unfortunately, the entire host objects infrastructure still looks very similar to the one from IE8. Host objects don’t inherit from Object.prototype, don’t report proper typeof, and don’t even have basic properties like “length” or “prototype”, which all function objects must have.
Kangax is doing a lot of good here. The more tests and call outs on what IE needs to do to be standards compliant the better. With the new rate of progress from the IE team, it isn’t like the old days where you thought you were talking to deaf ears. Microsoft is listening, and even better than that, they are doing. Now is the time to give them as much info as we can.
What would you like to see?
Posted by Dion Almaer at 4:35 pm