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   Microsoft, XML, and the real specs

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  • From: rev-bob@gotc.com
  • To: Paul Prescod <paul@prescod.net>,xml-dev@ic.ac.uk
  • Date: 23 Nov 99 11:15:33 -0500

> ** Original Sender: Paul Prescod <paul@prescod.net>
> Microsoft labels these features "technology previews." They know that
> some stupid people will build real systems on them but they say, quite
> rightly, that those systems will break with new versions of the tools
> and those people "get what they deserve." If it were Netscape issuing
> these technology previews we would laud them for testing out new ideas
> and providing feedback to the standards process (which Microsoft DOES
> DO).

Excuse me - ever hear of a little project called "Mozilla"?  I mean, if you want to talk 
tech previews....
> Let's give credit where it is due. The practice of shipping "technology
> previews" has benefits and costs but Microsoft's history indicates that
> they move to the real specifications when they become available.

Since when?  I'm running IE 5.01 right now - and it still doesn't handle HTML 4 or parts 
of CSS1 properly.  CSS2?  In your dreams.  Granted, it's better than the Netscape 4.7 
support - but Mozilla blows it away.  As far as I can tell, Microsoft has only "moved to 
the real specifications" when it can make some hay by doing so - and even then, the 
support is incomplete.  (I refer you to the long-ago announcement of CSS1 support in 
IE3 - only on Win95, and just enough support to make a couple of flashy examples.  
XML and IE5 now look much the same from where I sit - a lot of noise, but not much 
substance.  In fact, when considering my HTML/XML redirection routine, the only 
conclusion I could reach in good conscience was to turn IE5 away from the XML pages.  
It works okay, but it's not compliant - and I'm not going to start my XML designs by 
coding in legacy hacks.  I'd much rather wait until a compliant browser hits the scene 
than rush in to support a noncompliant one just so I can say I've done it.)

 Rev. Robert L. Hood  | http://rev-bob.gotc.com/
  Get Off The Cross!  | http://www.gotc.com/

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