Re: Microsoft versioning proposal

On 4/19/07, Chris Wilson <> wrote:
> "Freeze development" is not quite how I would put it.  "Freeze behavior"
> is what I would say, and yes.
> We will always make security and crashing-bug fixes in our code, at least
> within the limits of our maintenance contract (7 years from release, I
> believe, is the brief semi-accurate version).  Once a mode becomes
> significantly popular, we can't make big changes to already-existing
> behavior.  Today, many of the changes we need to make are big, and cause
> compatibility problems.  (I'll refer to the IE7 example of "we started
> following how CSS says overflow is supposed to work, and loads of sites
> started overlapping text".)
> We've already frozen behavior in quirks mode, as have other browsers.  The
> mistake we made in IE7 was that "standards mode" was already popular and
> depended, for us, on IE's incorrect behavior.
> -Chris

So because of your policy of freezing behaviour (I'd consider it freezing
development, security and bug fixes is maintenance not development) you
haven't actually fully implemented the CSS specs for example. Will you then
try to fully implement all of the relevant W3C specs in IE8? Will that take
such a long time that again people will complain that their pages are broken
because they depend on an incomplete implementation?

It seems to me that freezing behaviour and long release cycles has been
proved to work badly. I'd prefer to see more frequent releases of IE, even
up to every six months, releases that implement the specs in stages. If
people understand that the few bugs will be fixed soon, they will be less
likely to start depending on those bugs or serve IE different content.
They'll start expecting IE to work as well as any other browser, which is
something I think we all want.

Received on Thursday, 19 April 2007 01:44:49 UTC