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March 17, 2011 6:00 PM   Subscribe

We are IE - Comparing every version of Internet Explorer (slyt)
posted by Artw (35 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite

 
That makes me want to set up an installation of IE 1.0 to use whenever I want to download the latest Firefox or Chrome browser.
posted by localhuman at 6:06 PM on March 17, 2011 [1 favorite]


IE IE Oh.
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:15 PM on March 17, 2011 [1 favorite]


It's been a big week for browsers - IE9 has finally been released, of course, but Firefox 4 also made it to RC and has a release date now (March 22). Oh, and there was probably another version of Chrome or two, I find it a little hard to keep track...
posted by Artw at 6:15 PM on March 17, 2011


The latest version of Chrome gets 100/100 on Acid 3, incidentally. I was surprised the presenter was still clinging to Windows XP...

Also, does he sound exactly like a pretty good text-to-speech voice to anyone else? Maybe his is the accent they use to design those things.
posted by gilrain at 6:28 PM on March 17, 2011


Fifteen years and I've mostly only used it to download Netscape, Mozilla or Firefox.
posted by octothorpe at 6:29 PM on March 17, 2011


In case anyone is curious about the song in the beginning, "We are i.e." was one of the first 'jungle'/'drum & bass' records.
posted by empath at 6:36 PM on March 17, 2011 [1 favorite]


I was surprised the presenter was still clinging to Windows XP...

Previously

Also, does he sound exactly like a pretty good text-to-speech voice to anyone else? Maybe his is the accent they use to design those things.

Tsk.
posted by Artw at 6:39 PM on March 17, 2011


I'm waiting for the voice to say "Have you tried turning it off and on again?"
posted by schmod at 6:39 PM on March 17, 2011 [2 favorites]


I was quite surprised to hear that IE 5 ran under Windows 3.1! That would have been fun to see.

Wow, did Active Desktop suck or what. I wonder how many of those much-hyped "channels" still exist?
posted by JHarris at 7:11 PM on March 17, 2011


Did anyone else notice at the 8:00 mark he searched for "horse porn" on Bing?
posted by DeltaZ113 at 7:28 PM on March 17, 2011 [4 favorites]


DeltaZ113: Did anyone else notice at the 8:00 mark he searched for "horse porn" on Bing?

Yes, but we're not here to judge....

On a side note, his videos are rather interesting.
I'm not sure why I find them interesting, however.
posted by nickthetourist at 7:53 PM on March 17, 2011


I actually liked active desktop. It was full of single clicking goodness.
posted by oddman at 7:58 PM on March 17, 2011


I was expecting more about how IE6 makes the saints cry and is/was a major factor in alcoholism in an entire cohort of web designers, maybe that was cut for time. As illustrated in the IE6 countdown (which I believe was posted on MeFi earlier), there's still a long way to go until that browser is gone, but what a glorious day that will be.

What could his next video be? The same site in a bunch of browsers? Every version of Opera, Mosaic, Netscape, WebTV, mobile phones...? (I sometimes see WebTV show up in my visitor agent reports and I hope it's somebody with a sense of humor and not an actual user...)
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 8:05 PM on March 17, 2011


I didn't think he sounded like text to speech, but all through the video, I was expecting him to accidentally set the desktop on fire.
posted by maudlin at 8:09 PM on March 17, 2011


Yes, but we're not here to judge....

I thought it was hilarious.
posted by DeltaZ113 at 8:17 PM on March 17, 2011


Shitballs?!?!

...not to be confused with Pudong
posted by Confess, Fletch at 8:27 PM on March 17, 2011


Every version of Opera, Mosaic, Netscape, WebTV, mobile phones...?

I'd be quite interested in seeing that, though possibly more in the desktop browsers.

Oh god, the endless iterations of NN 4...
posted by Artw at 8:29 PM on March 17, 2011


This is the same guy who installed all of the Windowses in order. He is my personal British dork genius idol, as a sidekick to Yahtzee.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 9:25 PM on March 17, 2011


I think his next vid should be logging into chat roulette and seeing how long it takes to find a smiley woman to sing to. Of course, youtube videos have to be ten minutes or less, don't they? So it would have to be hella compressed.
posted by maxwelton at 9:32 PM on March 17, 2011


I love this. Strangely soothing and informative, yet deeply nerdy.
posted by device55 at 10:10 PM on March 17, 2011


Fifteen years and I've mostly only used it to download Netscape, Mozilla or Firefox.
Ditto. I used Netscape as my primary browser up to version 4.7 and then switched to Mozilla 0.6 full-time in late 2000.

I suppose there are many people who can't recall just how grim the early 2000s were for web browsing. In 1998 Netscape had open-sourced its browser and created mozilla.org to shepherd the project, but they were way behind schedule. By 2001, websites had all but given up on Netscape. If you wanted to experience the best of the web in 2001 you needed to run Windows and IE. Everyone else was left out in the cold. It looked as if Microsoft had indeed won the browser war.

Thankfully, there were enough web developers out there who rejected the Windows-only version of the web and were willing for wait for the engineers at mozilla.org to get their act together. As behind schedule as they were, they were the only real hope.

Mozilla did eventually release Firefox, and by 2004 even the most hardened Microsoft-only shops were talking enthusiastically about it.

Then, when Google released Gmail and announced full Firefox support from day 1, that's when Microsoft lost the browser war.

Now we take it for granted that we have multiple standards-complient, open-source web browsers to choose from, running on multiple desktop and mobile platforms. Today, the idea that we would need to be running Windows to browse the web seems completely preposterous, but it almost happened.
posted by i_have_a_computer at 12:24 AM on March 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


I recently had to install IE6 on purpose on a VM running Windows NT 4. I had no choice! The proprietary control software for a specialized gas chromatography instrument would only run with that setup.
posted by Burhanistan at 12:31 AM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


Did anyone else notice at the 8:00 mark he searched for "horse porn" on Bing?

I liked the fact he was loading up Timecube in the Wireshark tests. With the 'shitballs' login and horse porn search and I was pretty much giggling like a six year old the whole way through.
posted by a little headband I put around my throat at 3:50 AM on March 18, 2011


The decision to bundle Internet Explorer with Windows resulted in a long-running anti-trust lawsuit against Microsoft, but ensured it achieved near-total dominance of the brower market for a decade.

…for Internet Explorer 6, which was released in 2001. By the time of it's release, Microsoft had well won the browser wars, and as a result saw no reason to release another browser until 2007.


Yay, Monopoly!
posted by kisch mokusch at 5:05 AM on March 18, 2011


I know that people want to blame IE's popularity on monopolistic bundling with Windows OS, but in reality the main difference between early Netscape an IE was that IE was free in addition to being pre-loaded on the computer. For most users Netscape was a piece of software you had to buy. Average users are not going to hunt down esoteric browsers that half-work or pay when it was not necessary to use the web.

Ah, free, the magic word that rules the current Internet. Day in and day out people will praise Google and the like for "free" software, but in the instance of IE, well, I guess we must hate it because it came from Microsoft.

For what it's worth, I was a last holdout using Netscape. For a while it just worked better. Quickly over time Netscape just started to suck while IE improved. Now I use both firefox and IE. However, just for old times sake, I dug into an image of an old hard drive, popped open Netscape 7, blew past the annoying sign up screen, and came to MeFi to write this post.
posted by Muddler at 6:06 AM on March 18, 2011


I guess we must hate it because it came from Microsoft

I guess you're not a web designer.

And yeah, I remember when I used to use IE and much preferred it to Netscape. Firefox in parts still reminds me of some of the suckier features of Netscape (e.g. the view source window). Now I use Safari or Chrome and only dip into Firefox sometimes for all the nice extensions etc. And of course IE in order to ... well, get the damn thing to work in IE.

IE had definite good features. But then something called web standards came along. And update after update, IE refused to play nice with them. Hence e.g. this image.
posted by iotic at 6:21 AM on March 18, 2011


If you wanted to experience the best of the web in 2001 you needed to run Windows and IE. Everyone else was left out in the cold.

Not quite: there were versions of IE for Mac. IE 5 was great, at the time -- far better than Netscape.

well, I guess we must hate it because it came from Microsoft.

You guess wrong. We hated it because it was just about the only bit of free software that came from a company that otherwise sold all its software for large sums. So the question arose "why free, then?" And the only answer was "to kill the competition so we can own this market".
posted by bonaldi at 6:22 AM on March 18, 2011


the main difference between early Netscape an IE was that IE was free in addition to being pre-loaded on the computer

That would have to be very early. After very early it was easy to get Netscape Navigator for free (maybe from version 2 onward if I remember correctly). As a web developer at the time in those later early days the main difference, at least from version 4 of Netscape and version 4 or 5 of IE was that Navigator was a royal pain in the ass and quirky as hell, much like IE 6/7/8 are today. Having worked directly with Netscape (though more for their server side applications) I was not surprised to seem them tumble. Netscape was all kinds of a bad company at the time. It was interesting being a witness to the fall of Netscape and SGI then, whom we also worked with. It was obvious they were going down as well.
posted by juiceCake at 6:49 AM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yeah, I reckon he does fail to give Nerscape full credit for it's in it's own demise there.
posted by Artw at 7:40 AM on March 18, 2011


I can't believe a video of web browsers filled me with nostalgia. Ah, the heady days of the first internet boom...
posted by Mick at 7:56 AM on March 18, 2011


Joel Spolsky on one of the reasons Netscape failed: the decision by Netscape to rewrite the code from scratch in 1997.
posted by alasdair at 9:25 AM on March 18, 2011


Heh.

Pretty sure it was in a fucking horrible tailspin due to the awfulness of it;s browser before that.

Imagine if they hadn't tanked, would there be LAYER tags everywhere?
posted by Artw at 2:42 PM on March 18, 2011


There was never a time when you could not get any version of Netscape Navigator for free.

Netscape didn't die because Netscape was officially payware. There were millions of people snarfing the latest version of Navigator or Communicator thanks to the CD clipped to the cover of the latest Computer Shopper magazine, the Welcome to the Internet starter packages that your friendly local dial-up ISP provided with your signup, and the public anonymous FTP servers at netscape.com, all with Netscape's permission and blessing.

If anything, Netscape died because its server product line was their primary revenue stream, and it got caught between the freeware Apache and commercial Microsoft IIS (and a few other competitors).
posted by ardgedee at 9:26 PM on March 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


Web Browser Grand Prix 3: IE9 Enters The Race
posted by Artw at 10:45 AM on March 21, 2011


Mozilla Launches Firefox 4 and Delivers a Fast, Sleek and Customizable Browsing Experience to More Than 400 Million Users Worldwide
posted by Artw at 11:18 AM on March 22, 2011


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