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Dan Rubin's SuperfluousBanter

Suffering from chronic idiocy since 1977

Archive for September, 2008

The Final Word on IE6

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2008

A friend of mine recently asked the ques­tion “Why the Hate on Inter­net Explorer 6?” He explains some very log­i­cal rea­sons why it doesn’t make sense to be so neg­a­tive about IE6, and as I agree with him on just about all points, I thought I’d give the clear­est answer I could.

Sim­ply put, IE6 shouldn’t get any hate. Nor should it receive any love, either.

The best thing the web stan­dards com­mu­nity (and any other smart web folk) can do is stop com­plain­ing about an ancient browser whose devel­oper waited too long to replace, and just stop sup­port­ing it altogether.

One of the ben­e­fits of web stan­dards is that our doc­u­ments are marked up cor­rectly before we reach the pre­sen­ta­tional stage. One of the ben­e­fits of IE6 (et al) is that we can tar­get spe­cific ver­sions using Con­di­tional Com­ments. The com­bi­na­tion of the two means we can still send our con­tent to old browsers, but not have to bother with the pre­sen­ta­tion, thus sav­ing our­selves hours of need­less headaches and frus­tra­tions, while not pun­ish­ing the users of said old browsers by deny­ing them access to our content.

There’s con­stant dis­cus­sion about whether or not to con­tinue sup­port for IE6, and the only rea­son ever given these days in favor of sup­port­ing that browser is its mar­ket share. That mar­ket share is dimin­ish­ing, and we’ve already reached the sec­ond beta of IE8, so let’s start drop­ping it already. Make the argu­ment against sup­port­ing IE6, to your clients, your boss, your team—whoever needs to hear it, keep apply­ing pres­sure and don’t back down.

It’s time to stop sup­port­ing IE6. Period.

This arti­cle has very kindly been trans­lated to Serbo-Croatian lan­guage by Jovana Miluti­novich from Webhostinggeeks.com.