The State of IE and Firefox

By Michael Flanakin @ 4:29 PM :: 1910 Views :: Technology, Open Source/Standards :: Digg it!

Maybe it's just me, but I keep waiting to see some major reason to switch back to Firefox and it just isn't happening. I picked it up pretty quickly at about 0.7.something and fell in love. Well, maybe it was more lust. I still go back and forth between the Firefox and IE, but that's more about getting things to work in both major browsers. Since IE7 was released, it's been my default; and, after looking at Firefox 3 Beta 1, that won't be changing anytime soon. There are only a small handful of features in Firefox I feel really out-step IE and I find most of those in add-ons. Honestly, there's only one feature I miss. Well, it's not really a feature, but the actual architecture. Firefox reminds me of two other very successful applications, Visual Studio and Eclipse. Why? Because all three are biult on extensibility. All three are merely skeletons to be built upon. Everything you get when you download/buy these apps is an extension that was merely packaged with it on the install. If IE had such a framework, I'd argue that it was better than Firefox. The lack of this framework is why I believe Firefox is so successful... aside from great timing given Microsoft's lack of improving IE. A lot of good work went into IE7, but it's not enough. IE8 is fairly hush-hush and, while I have a few ideas of what will be added, I don't think we're going to see a change in the underlying architecture. From what I've heard, there's a potential for a small revolution, but that all depends on implementation, of course. If you ask me, tho, I'd like to see a complete rewrite for IE9. I don't think that's necessarily out of the question, either. There are some good things we could see out of it. Anyway, what I really started this post for was how disappointed I am in Firefox 3. Aside from the architecture, Firefox doesn't bring anything revolutionary to the table and I'm still waiting for more. One day we'll see something big. The question is, who will push it out first and when? I have a feeling that'll be IE.

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