# Thursday, 01 July 2004

On MS, IE and platforms

Ian Hixie discusses the state of 'the' WHAT (well worth reading):

... As Joel points out, though, Microsoft's moves after they realised their mistake with IE have been harder to understand. I would have thought the solution most likely to succeed would have been to extend IE in ways that made it into a better application deployment platform. Eventually, this could have turned IE into the OS, either natively (making the next version of Windows basically be IE), or by selling IE with versions for all operating systems. This would have had several advantages: ... [via Hixie's Natural Log]

He muses that "They actually did start down that road. IE6 has support for a technology that Microsoft stopped advertising at the same time as they stopped developing IE, namely HTAs, short for HTML Applications" - but he doesn't say that HTAs are a subset of Zeepe. It is possible that HTAs were derived from Zeepe's pre-cursor (by name) WPM because WPM is referenced by MS in their web applications patent.

And it heartens me greatly to see:

"The problem with the browser today is that applications based in the browser are constrained to nightmarish UI idioms and a severe lack of polish stemming from the fact that the platform was not really developed as a platform, and that no real progress has been made on this path for several years."

We've been trying to make progress, it remains a question as to whether developers really care, or whether users really care. What is clear is that some people need to see iMunch or any of the Zeepe samples to get out of this:

the user experience of any app running in a web browser is crippled [via Daring Fireball]

view. The web browser may be crippled but, IMHO, DHTML is anything but cripppled.


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