Why is Internet Explorer "a joke".

DoPo

"You're not cleared for that."
Jan 30, 2012
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Griffolion said:
OlasDAlmighty said:
IE being a joke is a relic of the old time of when it was actually a joke of a browser. Now, it's very competent, you wouldn't have a bad time with it at all.
Again - it took them over 10 years to reach "competent" levels. That still counts as a joke.
 

Seracen

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Sep 20, 2009
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A lot of the university applications I need to run won't even work properly with IE, and work best on Firefox.

Personally, I prefer the apps and speed that are available via Chrome. Certain plugins I consider necessary aren't even available on IE, and when they are, the lag is horrible.
 

Weaver

Overcaffeinated
Apr 28, 2008
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It's entirely the fault of IE6. It was just a terrible browser. It's largely considered to be one of the worst browsers ever made and even Microsoft execs joke about how it's probably the worst piece of software MS has ever created. That image stuck with them all this time.
 

MrPhyntch

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Nov 4, 2009
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I would turn the question around on you, actually, OP. Why do you think that Internet Explorer needs defending? "It's passable", "It's on par", and "It's not as bad anymore" are hardly ringing endorsements. Something that has taken so long to catch up is going to get residual hate from when it was still behind, and then there's the likelihood that they'll just fall behind again. Even if IE is exactly the same as the other browsers in terms of speed, usability, and security, those of use who already adopted other browsers have no reason to return, whereas other people who use IE may have reason to switch, because:

1. Firefox is so easy to add add-ons to, as well as find add-ons that you want, it's not funny.
2. Chrome doesn't collect nearly as much bloat over use as IE, in fact I was sold on it with their initial promise that it's physically impossible to add toolbars onto it. Add the fact that Chrome can run almost any Android-based app (if I'm not mistaken) and Chrome has its extra functionality, too.
3. Safari works really well for those with apple-heavy focus, such as iTunes and similar stuff, due to product integration features.
4. You CANNOT beat Opera in terms of speed. Period. It was designed as a light-weight browser from the get-go and is simply great for those with low-power systems.

And so, with all that functionality, "pretty much the same as other browsers" doesn't really cut it simply due to the added functionality of the other browsers. If IE is ever going to have its own merits and not be seen as its own browser and not a way to download other browsers, it needs something unique (that ADDS functionality, not the stuff that we saw from IE 9 and before)

Also, it's not exactly a recent thing for IE to get hate from the geeks. Anyone else here remember Netscape Navigator? Good times man, good times.

Griffolion said:
I generally hold two very unpopular opinions:

1: Windows 8 (and subsequently 8.1) is the best operating system Microsoft have ever done, both from a technical and HCI standpoint.
Would actually agree with you on this one, if there were some way to permanently get rid of the touch-screen designed Metro Interface on non touch-screen based computers (that is, without severe modding that can lead to other issues with the OS if not done properly). When using a keyboard and mouse, I have yet to find anything that beats the standard start menu style interface (this includes the interfaces on Macs and Linux). Because the interface is so horrible, I simply refuse to use it out of spite. But you're right, besides Metro, it is arguably the best Windows platform to date.

EDIT:

Weaver said:
It's entirely the fault of IE6. It was just a terrible browser. It's largely considered to be one of the worst browsers ever made and even Microsoft execs joke about how it's probably the worst piece of software MS has ever created. That image stuck with them all this time.
Want the REAL worst software Microsoft ever created? Go Google "Microsoft Bob". Enjoy.
 

spartan231490

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Jan 14, 2010
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It uses a lot of resources, it has serious security flaws, and in my personal experience it can't handle more than a handful of tabs at a time without crashing. The single greatest condemnation is how much web designers hate it. It really should just be allowed to quietly die already.
 

Someone Depressing

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Anything before ver. 9 was like a horrible cancer.

Not quite a yandere cancer, but still an awful cancer. I was slow, the layout was horrible... and really, now, moe is the worst anime drawing style ever. And the sheer idea of having an anime mascot not because she's... a mascot, but rather, just anime, is really, really, really, really, really, really dumb.
 

aba1

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paulgruberman said:
From a web dev standpoint, needing to add extra code so the site works for IE (yes, even the latest version) is a constant, needless waste of time. Things look fine on the viewer's end because web devs are taking the hits for you.
This plus IE barely if at all supports HTML5 and is always just sorta behind the curve in general. If there is something cool on the new thats new you can bet IE doesn't support it without a ton of work on the dev's end.
 

SaberXIII

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To be honest, I still use IE and it treats me fine; it's simple and gets the job done. I've tried using Chrome and I found that to be a mess and a hassle to use, and I have Firefox but never found any benefit to using it as opposed to IE. Maybe for computer nuts or people who are interested in technology it might be miles better, but for the layman I don't understand why it matters.
 

Rattja

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Just take a moment and think about this.

Why do you think other browsers were made?
 

Nomad

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Aug 3, 2008
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DoPo said:
Actually...no - sometimes you are forced to use it. Welcome to corporate environment. In fact, the reason IE6 was as widely used before wasn't because people just loved it so much - a lot of organisations had to use it. That's a big part of it's userbase - people who are forced to use it. So, no - you are also wrong on this account - sometimes you are forced to use IE.
The thing is that this line of reasoning goes both ways. I recently worked at a municipal authority that forced us to use Chrome, and a swath of other google services, both because of a service provision contract and because of compatibility issues. The same goes for the "IE forces us to write extra code for compatibility"-deal - you could also say the other browsers force you to write extra code for compatibility, if IE is your starting point.

Mersadeon said:
Don't get me wrong, it's not the horrible testicle-cancer it used to be, but it still isn't up to snuff. Security wise, especially. I only use it when Firefox is spazzing out with long youtube videos. Internet Explorer is still unsafe, at times incredibly inconvenient with its interface design and slower than others.
Do you have any actual data to back this up? Because my 10 seconds of googling gave me the opposite result [https://nsslabs.com/reports/2013-browser-security-comparative-analysis-socially-engineered-malware]. IE came out on top with signficant margin - IE blocks 996/1000 malware attacks. The runner-up, Chrome, blocks 8/10, and Firefox only blocks 1/10.Furthermore, only 16% of the blocked IE attacks were blocked by CAMP schemes (described as "flawed technology" by the report), while Chrome's corresponding number is 73%. Disregarding their CAMP scheme, Chrome is right down there with Firefox when it comes to successful blocking.


---
Fine. IE might be a mess to code for - I don't know, I'm not a programmer. Nor am I a software security expert. But neither are the vast majority of people slinging mud at it because it's "hard to code for", or because it has "huge security issues". It just seems to me like someone decided at one point that IE was the devil, and since then everyone has just accepted that claim at face value.

Rattja said:
Just take a moment and think about this.

Why do you think other browsers were made?
Right. So Chrome and Firefox are also horrible, then, since their competitors did not immediately close down shop when they appeared.
 

Nocturnus

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Oct 2, 2007
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To those who say that IE has the worst security, still..

Actually not true. IE has the best malware blocking rate of all the current browsers because of SmartScreen.

http://www.pcworld.com/article/235887/ie_wins_malware_blocking_tests.html

Windows 8 uses SmartScreen for the Operating System itself, which is one of the reasons that it's so dang secure.

So in answer to your questions... it sucked before, it doesn't suck at all now (and is actually pretty good), and people are holding an extremely emotionally biased grudge a mile long because of that mis-step. That's pretty much par for the course when it comes to people, though. :p
 

Nomad

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Aug 3, 2008
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Nocturnus said:
To those who say that IE has the worst security, still..

Actually not true. IE has the best malware blocking rate of all the current browsers because of SmartScreen.

http://www.pcworld.com/article/235887/ie_wins_malware_blocking_tests.html

Windows 8 uses SmartScreen for the Operating System itself, which is one of the reasons that it's so dang secure.

So in answer to your questions... it sucked before, it doesn't suck at all now (and is actually pretty good), and people are holding an extremely emotionally biased grudge a mile long because of that mis-step. That's pretty much par for the course when it comes to people, though. :p
Yep. That article cites the same test by NSS as I did in the post above yours, except the article is two years older and takes aim at IE8 and IE9, instead of IE10 as in the test I linked to. So it's not even a matter of "IE isn't bad at security anymore", it's a matter of "IE hasn't been bad at security for a good while".
 

Calcium

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Seems to me the trashing is just typical internet fanaticism. If someone prefers A over B, then it's not because they simply prefer A, B must be the worst thing that ever happened! It's okay for people to dilike things but... there's a lot of people on the internet whom are prone to massive overexageration, many of whom share the inability to realise how it makes them sound unreasonable.
 

DoPo

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Jan 30, 2012
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Nomad said:
The same goes for the "IE forces us to write extra code for compatibility"-deal - you could also say the other browsers force you to write extra code for compatibility, if IE is your starting point.
Dude, you just made a fool of yourself. No, you absolutely cannot say that. Your starting point isn't a browser - it's the standard for HTML/CSS/JavaScript which is put in place by the World Wide Web Consortium [http://www.w3.org/]. That's the whole reason you can make a web page and have it display in all browsers, as long as the code is valid [http://validator.w3.org/]. A standard which was wildly ignored by earlier versions of IE - a conscious effort by Microsoft, by the way, as they did want to dictate the standards themselves (which is hilarious, as consecutive versions broke their own standards).

Please, educate yourself instead of making claims displaying how much not knowledge you have on the matter.

Nomad said:
Fine. IE might be a mess to code for - I don't know, I'm not a programmer.
Gee, I really couldn't tell.

Nomad said:
But neither are the vast majority of people slinging mud at it because it's "hard to code for"
You could have...not said that. You said it yourself - you have no clue in the matter. The fact is - pretty much everybody with rudimentary knowledge of HTML knows it. So no, it's not like it's some obscure arcane incantations, known only to the lords of HTML, that fail - it's pretty basic stuff. Granted, as I said - IE is better now, but anybody who tried their hand at making web pages 2 or more years ago would know very well.
 

Griffolion

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MrPhyntch said:
Would actually agree with you on this one, if there were some way to permanently get rid of the touch-screen designed Metro Interface on non touch-screen based computers (that is, without severe modding that can lead to other issues with the OS if not done properly). When using a keyboard and mouse, I have yet to find anything that beats the standard start menu style interface (this includes the interfaces on Macs and Linux). Because the interface is so horrible, I simply refuse to use it out of spite. But you're right, besides Metro, it is arguably the best Windows platform to date.
For me, there is one redeeming feature of Metro which means I'm fine with it, and which has meant me feeling incredibly uncomfortable going back to 7, and that's the ridiculously good application search.

-> Tap windows key
-> Type 3-4 letters of the name of the program
-> 99.99% of the time, Windows will return you the right result at the top of the list
-> Press enter, program starts

That, for me, has had a miniature revolution in how I actually go about my OS. Yes, 7 had search-in-start functionality, but it's simply not as well done as this. Yes you can set desktop shortcuts/taskbar shortcuts, but the search is so accurate and quick that I now don't need to.

Granted, MS did make mistakes in its policy of "Metro goes on literally everything". But there are some aspects in there which are killer for a desktop/non-touch laptop. Again, this is just my opinion. But 8.1 (a free upgrade from 8) let's you specify to boot straight to desktop rather than Metro if you so desire, so I actually barely ever see Metro on my laptop now.

Windows 8 does not get flack for being worse than 7, that's impossible, since it's better. It gets flack for being different, and therein lies the indictment on the state of the community accepting it and not necessarily Microsoft. That said, Microsoft do have some changes to make to 8 before it becomes truly killer (Windows really needs to be made to be natively device aware, so it can either tone down or tone up Metro according to the device).

Crap, I still can't find my flamesuit.
 

devotedsniper

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Dec 28, 2010
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paulgruberman said:
From a web dev standpoint, needing to add extra code so the site works for IE (yes, even the latest version) is a constant, needless waste of time. Things look fine on the viewer's end because web devs are taking the hits for you.
Agreed, the amount of sites we have go live which work 99% of the time with every browser but IE is stupid, it just makes our lives hell at times.

*EDIT* e.g. We have a huge site which went live back in september and the amount of things which just didn't work for IE off the bat is pathetic, we're talking a huge site with several thousand hits an hour. It's an MVC site too so most of the magic is done by C# and entity framework. We had to spend a good weeks worth of dev time figuring out why things like the login system kills IE cookies randomly (kicking them out to the login screen, or sometimes just not letting them in at all). The worst part is the majority of the login system is the stock Microsoft one with a few added features to work with things like generic repositories... Theres also all the styling bugs IE and only IE creates.
 

Nomad

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Aug 3, 2008
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DoPo said:
Nomad said:
The same goes for the "IE forces us to write extra code for compatibility"-deal - you could also say the other browsers force you to write extra code for compatibility, if IE is your starting point.
Dude, you just made a fool of yourself. No, you absolutely cannot say that. Your starting point isn't a browser - it's the standard for HTML/CSS/JavaScript which is put in place by the World Wide Web Consortium [http://www.w3.org/]. That's the whole reason you can make a web page and have it display in all browsers, as long as the code is valid [http://validator.w3.org/]. A standard which was wildly ignored by earlier versions of IE - a conscious effort by Microsoft, by the way, as they did want to dictate the standards themselves (which is hilarious, as consecutive versions broke their own standards).

Please, educate yourself instead of making claims displaying how much not knowledge you have on the matter.
Again, your starting point in this case is the standard you mentioned. Note the relevant bolded part of my post. If your starting point is IE and the demands of IE - regardless of external standards - then everything else becomes deviant. I would also appreciate a more civil tone from you - criticize my arguments, not me personally.

DoPo said:
Nomad said:
But neither are the vast majority of people slinging mud at it because it's "hard to code for"
You could have...not said that. You said it yourself - you have no clue in the matter. The fact is - pretty much everybody with rudimentary knowledge of HTML knows it. So no, it's not like it's some obscure arcane incantations, known only to the lords of HTML, that fail - it's pretty basic stuff. Granted, as I said - IE is better now, but anybody who tried their hand at making web pages 2 or more years ago would know very well.
No, the statement I made there is pretty safe - the vast majority of people in general are not programmers, nor do they have the sort of "rudimentary knowledge of HTML" you speak of. The criticism against IE has largely become institutionalized, to the point where any given person is likely to parrot whatever they heard about it in the past because - as you say - "it's common knowledge". Note how I said nothing about whether or not IE actually is hard to code for. Like I said, I wouldn't know. What I'm getting at is that a large portion of the criticism in this vein is not based on the competence of the author of the criticism, but rather on hearsay.
 

jackpipsam

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Jun 2, 2009
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The new internet explorer isn't terrible and the advertising they do for it is pretty clever.

Although I am used to Chrome now.
But I hold no ill-will towards IE.
 

jklinders

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Sep 21, 2010
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IE is a heck of a lot better than it was when I switched away from it. It has cleaned many of it's security vulnerabilities, it's UI is cleaner and less obtrusive and it works for the end user a fair bit better.

I still refuse to use it. It has taken a decade for it to get to this point, three operating systems and god only know how many man hours in fixes and user complaints and out and out ridicule. When it only had Netscape to compete with they could get away with being garbage because I think Netscape was even worse if only barely. But when Firefox, Opera and later Chrome came out they were forced kicking and screaming and scratching and clawing to improve. the only reason why IE is usable today is because they were forced to improve to nearly the standard of their competition. Not a very good reason to go back to them IMHO.
 

DoPo

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Jan 30, 2012
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Nomad said:
DoPo said:
Nomad said:
The same goes for the "IE forces us to write extra code for compatibility"-deal - you could also say the other browsers force you to write extra code for compatibility, if IE is your starting point.
Dude, you just made a fool of yourself. No, you absolutely cannot say that. Your starting point isn't a browser - it's the standard for HTML/CSS/JavaScript which is put in place by the World Wide Web Consortium [http://www.w3.org/]. That's the whole reason you can make a web page and have it display in all browsers, as long as the code is valid [http://validator.w3.org/]. A standard which was wildly ignored by earlier versions of IE - a conscious effort by Microsoft, by the way, as they did want to dictate the standards themselves (which is hilarious, as consecutive versions broke their own standards).

Please, educate yourself instead of making claims displaying how much not knowledge you have on the matter.
Again, your starting point in this case is the standard you mentioned. Note the relevant bolded part of my post. If your starting point is IE and the demands of IE - regardless of external standards - then everything else becomes deviant.
Again THAT IS NOT HOW IT WORKS. I know you want to twist and turn so you don't sound as wrong, but you are wrong - accept it. You have no clue what you are talking about and yet you proceed to talk as if that shouldn't matter and you have some sort of point there.

Tell me - if you go to buy, say, a pint of beer, do you have your own measuring cup or do you go with the universally agreed volume for a pint? Because I'm pretty sure you aren't going to view all other pints as "deviant".The bolded part is irrelevant - Microsoft must follow the external standards, that's why we can even talk about HTML in the first place. Otherwise, we would have had HTML++ or something which is a proprietary Microsoft format. We aren't, therefore, it's W3C we must verify against. IE fails in that regard - it doesn't fail compared to other browsers, it fails against the universal measuring stick. So no - again I tell you - you don't have a coherent point there - you don't know what you're saying so I guess that's why you don't see how what you're saying makes no sense. Trust me - it doesn't.

Nomad said:
I would also appreciate a more civil tone from you - criticize my arguments, not me personally.
I would appreciate you not spewing uneducated, unneeded, and wrong thoughts on a matter you admit cannot even discuss, and still claim to have be correct after all...just because ponies or something.