A Christmas Present from Microsoft

I love Macs. I use one at work, I use one at home and I use one on the go (laptop). I also work with a lot of people and teach a lot of students who also use Macs… One of the most consistently annoying things for me about working in an Apple environment has historically been people using Internet Explorer for Mac. It’s one of those things that irks me.

“Normal” people may not understand why it bothers me and probably think I just have vendetta against Microsoft or something (which I may, but that’s besides the point), even though I try to clearly explain that Microsoft Internet Explorer for Mac, is not the same as Internet Explorer for PC. IE for Mac is ancient, under developed and in my opinion, irresponsibly available to Mac users who don’t know any better.

The fact that Microsoft stopped developing IE for Mac after June 16th, 2003 doesn’t seem to really make most people bat an eye; however, if you’re a web-developer trying to write Web 2.0 applications and you have an inbox full of support tickets all relating to IE for Mac (which I clearly state is unsupported)… it’s sort of a big deal.

That being said, I was pleased as punch to read the following today:

In June 2003, the Microsoft Macintosh Business Unit announced that Internet Explorer for Mac would undergo no further development, and support would cease in 2005. In accordance with published support lifecycle policies, Microsoft will end support for Internet Explorer for Mac on December 31st, 2005, and will provide no further security or performance updates.

Additionally, as of January 31st, 2006, Internet Explorer for the Mac will no longer be available for download from Mactopia. It is recommended that Macintosh users migrate to more recent web browsing technologies such as Apple’s Safari.

My only criticism of this release is the rest of the page it’s on. Like come on, this release is trying to sway users from using Internet Explorer for Mac, but then they put a download link right beside it? They also have a link to “What’s new in Internet Explorer 5 for Mac OS X?“… Give me a damn break, nothing’s new, that’s the point of this news release. As a co-worker said to me today “new” is a relative term. You can’t say something is new in the computer industry that was released in 2003.

IE For Mac Announcement

All in all, thank-you Microsoft for this Press Release during the Holidays. I finally have some armor piercing ammo to use against those hard core “blue E” clickers, who see nothing wrong with having web-developers spend hours of wasted time downgrading websites and applications so they can continue to enjoy CSS1 and no plug-ins.

Best Regards,
Matt Simpson

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