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Microsoft Complains That WebKit Breaks Web Standards

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the this-pot-is-extra-black dept.

Microsoft 373

Billly Gates writes "In a bizarre, yet funny and ironic move, Microsoft warned web developers that using WebKit stagnates open standards and innovation on the Web. According to the call to action in its Windows Phone Developer Blog, Microsoft is especially concerned about the mobile market, where many mobile sites only work with Android or iOS with WebKit-specific extensions. Their examples include W3C code such as radius-border, which is being written as -WebKit-radius-border instead on websites. In the mobile market WebKit has a 90% marketshare, while website masters feel it is not worth the development effort to test against browsers such as IE. Microsoft's solution to the problem of course is to use IE 10 for standard compliance and not use the proprietary (yet open source) WebKit."

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Microsoft is right (5, Insightful)

GoogleFan1 (2776445) | about 2 years ago | (#42018975)

WebKit is doing exactly what Microsoft accuses it of. They are developing their own extensions and putting them out as webkit- prefixed. Of course Microsoft shouldn't try to implement these non-standard extensions but use the standard ones. This is why I see nothing "funny" or "bizarre" about it, other than for the fact that WebKit is now doing exactly what everyone hated IE doing years ago.

Re:Microsoft is right (5, Insightful)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 2 years ago | (#42018989)

The funny and bizarre part is that this is exactly what Microsoft did for a long, long time. It's only with IE7 they made the first steps towards standardization (thus why so many apps are stuck using IE6) and later versions of IE have made standardization even more of a priority. It's toeing a thin line of hypocrisy and the only thing keeping them from crossing is it the fact that they stopped doing exactly this just a few years ago.

Re:Microsoft is right (5, Informative)

ewanm89 (1052822) | about 2 years ago | (#42019053)

And webkit prefix is supposed to be either not yet ratified in the standard features, or for internal rendering, opera and firefox have similar prefixed extensions. What Microsoft did in the past is even more heinous and used already ratified statements in ways contrary to the specifications, requiring IE comment hacks so other browsers don't see corrections needed to get IE to display properly.

Oh, and before anything gets ratified by W3C there needs to be a reference implementation, this is why prefixes are a good thing, now web developers using them without understanding the repercussions, that needs to stop.

Re:Microsoft is right (2)

dingen (958134) | about 2 years ago | (#42019103)

Even though Microsoft has entered a road towards standardization from IE7 on, their browser remains the weakest one in that regard. No version of Internet Explorer implements HTML5 and CSS3 to the extend the competition does and their rendering engine still includes non-standard behavior in many situations. They might be lagging behind less far than they used to, but IE is still solid in last place when it comes to standard compliance.

Re:Microsoft is right (4, Interesting)

erroneus (253617) | about 2 years ago | (#42019943)

Let's also remind ourselves how Microsoft continues to hurt itself. It continues to have the web browser integrated with its OS and UI.

Here's a similar complaint I have about GNOME.

Many here love and use GNOME2 because GNOME3 with its GNOME Shell just draws anger and rage from users. In order to stay with GNOME2, I elected to go with CentOS because it is stable and mature. But that's when I was faced with a huge problem with GNOME that I couldn't believe. The utter stupidity and betrayal I felt when I came to realize what happened made me lose what little respect for GNOME developers I had at the time. "What's he talking about?!" This:

GNOME2 on CentOS 6.3 cannot run GiMP 2.8.x or above. Why not? Well, it turns out that GTK (Gimp toolkit) was used as part of GNOME2's dependencies. So no matter what a person does to compiled and reconfigure GiMP, he will never get a good user experience under GiMP while using CentOS 6.x. And the fault lies with GNOME2. The application toolkit which was put together and maintained by another project (GIMP in this case) was being used to support a desktop user interface. This means the desktop environment can only support GNOME apps which are 'compatible' with its selection of GTK libraries. This, of course, doesn't happen under Windows or other DEs under Linux or under Mac OS X. Thank you SO frikken much GNOME developers for your little timebomb that was GNOME2. You shat in the corner of the room and moved away to develop GNOME3. People moved away from GNOME3 only to find that they just stepped in the GNOME2 turd you left behind.

Okay, so what does that have to do with Microsoft and HTML and all that? Well, it turns out that by integrating an application (and all its dependent libraries) in the with desktop environment, they have blurred the lines between OS and Application even further and they maintain this behavior even with their new OSes. Why? Well, it served them well in the past though they knew it was anticompetitive. But when they are starting out at the bottom, they need to realize they aren't doing themselves any favors. They need to pull the browser out of the OS to enable people to use multiple versions of Microsoft's own browsers.

The rule which I don't think has ever been stated, where OS and User Interface development is concerned is "DO NOT USE APPLICATIONS LIBRARIES IN YOUR USER INTERFACE CODE!!!" This inherently limits the applications which can run in your OS/UI. The two ways to fix the CentOS/GNOME2 problem is for GiMP to change their code or for CentOS (and Redhat) to update their GNOME2. Neither party is interested in this large task and even if they did, the problem is the same. Microsoft can update their browsers all day long but the problem remains the same so long as you can only have one.

Re:Microsoft is right (2)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019113)

Microsoft has been pushing for standards compliance for a while now. IE7 came out over 6 years ago. I know slashdot loves to hate Microsoft, but just because you made a mistake in the past and changed course doesn't make you hypocrite. They'd be a hypocrite if IE10 was pushing non-standard compliant extensions and they were calling someone else out for the same thing. That's not the case. Microsoft is in the right here.

Re:Microsoft is right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019211)

IE10 still features non-standard behavior and lags behind the competition on html5 and css3 support. And yet they complain about a browser engine that is the very one that is moving standards forward in the way it was intended through prefixed extensions. Microsoft, ever the hypocrites.

Re:Microsoft is right (1, Redundant)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about 2 years ago | (#42019537)

How does IE10 do with the acid tests? Never mind - I'll look for myself . . . .

This link seems to be a little dated, with FF3 and IE8:
http://devseo.co.uk/blog/view/the-acid-3-test-the-latest-browser-results [devseo.co.uk]

Another dated comparison:
http://cybernetnews.com/browser-comparison-internet-explorer-firefox-chrome-safari-opera/ [cybernetnews.com]

Some dude on Youtube claims that IE10 passes with a score of 100 - I'd rather see a review from a reputable source. The video shows him RELOADING a page with the score of 100 - that's not exactly the way to run the test.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BgVD7fdyR4o [youtube.com]

Wikipedia seems to believe that IE10 passes the acid test:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acid3#Internet_Explorer_-_4th_time [wikipedia.org]

Maybe it does - but it was a long time coming!!

Re:Microsoft is right (5, Informative)

Gadget27 (1931378) | about 2 years ago | (#42019681)

For what its worth, I'm on Windows 8, thus I have IE10. I ran acidtest3, and believe it or not, it did score 100. I may not be the reputable source you are looking for... but I was just as surprised as you may be with the result. IE's been off my radar for too long for me to care either way though.

Re:Microsoft is right (1)

erroneus (253617) | about 2 years ago | (#42019975)

It just goes to show that web developers don't care to write code that is ACID test compliant. (I know, there is no such thing) If web developers didn't use webkit- specific extensions, Microsoft wouldn't be complaining. Developers need to care about that stuff but they don't. This is a fact that Microsoft depended upon while it was rolling over their competition at every turn.

So because someone did something wrong once (2, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | about 2 years ago | (#42019279)

They should never be able to comment on when other do it?

That is a rather silly line of thinking. That is the same kind of BS as when people say "US citizens shouldn't be able to criticize China for human rights because the US doesn't have a perfect human rights record!"

MS has been getting pretty good with regards to standards and the like. As such I don't think there is anything wrong with them pointing out when others are not. Even if they weren't it wouldn't make their criticism less valid, it would just mean they should turn it inward as well.

Re:So because someone did something wrong once (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019347)

They should never be able to comment on when other do it?

Sorry 'tard, you are already wrong. Nobody is doing what MS did with IE back in the day. The prefixes are how it is supposed to be done when you are testing out new features that haven't been ratified yet. What MS did was subvert standard features already in place to their own ends. I realize it is a distinction that can be lost on fan-idiots such as yourself but now that it has been explained, please stop insulting yourself.

Re:So because someone did something wrong once (0)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 2 years ago | (#42019379)

Sorry 'tard

And yet you've discredited yourself before you've even got three words in. Grow up.

Re:So because someone did something wrong once (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019427)

At least his ad hominem is followed by a cogent argument. Unlike yours. Irony.

Re:So because someone did something wrong once (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019901)

I suppose it depends on whether or not it is:

"I learned from experience that that you shouldn't do that." and "No fair! You can't brake the rules like me!" And, if group 1, that it is not a convenient rationalization or demagoguery to mask group 2 intent.

The net field indicates a high amount of paths leading to group 2 intent, with the opposite true for public performance. It is difficult to predict the breakdown of percentages per path due to the massively multiple personalities involved in the performances and decisions, plus the conflict between the inherent asocial will of the combined entity and the pro-social nature of the majority of the individuals that make it up.

Without hard stats, and the inherent near impossibility to accurately assess intent, I am guessing the following: The organization in so much as it is aware is only pissed because someone else is using it's own anti-social tactics against them. This probably applies to approximately 30% of it's top leadership as well. Approximately 80% of the constituent organization is either group 1 or does not care enough to render a judgement. 10 percent is conflicted, 10 percent is hypocritical.

Beside the point anyway: Why is yet another entity crapping on the standards?

False dichotomy: This isn't red team versus blue team. You do not have to be on someone's "side" just to recognize that something they hit on has some truth to it, nor do you have to accept their other statements as true, nor they as "good" nor beneficial to you and yours. You do not have to deny a statement just because someone you do not like or trust is saying it, nor do you have to stop calling them out for any of their misdeeds.

Judgement: Siding with or against Microsoft in this case is asinine. "Siding" at all likely plays into the intent of its statement: recruiting and setting pawns in motion. The webkit issue needs to be looked into and resolved if/before the problem becomes significant.

Re:So because someone did something wrong once (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019921)

It's that the extensive damage done by Microsoft in the past makes it seem disingenuous. MS may be right but people still don't trust them. They shat where they ate for a very long time. It's gong to take just as long if not longer for them to live it down.

They deserve a bit of scoffing it'll help them remember not to shit on everyone if their browser ever pulls ahead again. I'm not saying that they're wrong, I'm saying they deserve every snide remark they get about this issue.

Re:Microsoft is right (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019587)

The funny and bizarre part is that this is exactly what Microsoft did for a long, long time.

Nope. There's a huge difference between perverting the standard and extensions. While Microsoft is right to complain, WebKit isn't the bad guy here, and it's not really anything they can fix since extensions is how you're supposed to do non-standard behaviour. The fault lies with those who only test their sites on WebKit, or keep using the extension even after that feature has been standardized.

Re:Microsoft is right (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019039)

Good. Fuck Microsoft and fuck Internet Explorer. If WebKit were just one browser or closed source I might shed a tear for the hypocrites in Redmond but as it stands, MS can shove their bleating straight up their asses.

Re:Microsoft is right (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019135)

Good. Fuck Microsoft and fuck Internet Explorer. If WebKit were just one browser or closed source I might shed a tear for the hypocrites in Redmond but as it stands, MS can shove their bleating straight up their asses.

You're a fucking idiot. Firefox and Opera are not webkit browsers and yet they are standard compliant.
Your blind hate/rage for what Microsoft has done in the past is pushing us in the same exact direction we tried to avoid a decade ago. A lesson not learned eh ?

Re:Microsoft is right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019167)

Hey dumbass. Prefixed extensions are how it is supposed to be done. MS did not do it that way with internet explorer so it was a confusing mess. Blind worship is much worse than blind hate.

Re:Microsoft is right (5, Insightful)

dingen (958134) | about 2 years ago | (#42019061)

The webkit-prefixes is exactly what Microsoft never did. By prefixing attributes, it is clear for everyone these are platform-specific features in need of a cross-platform solution. Microsoft instead always tried to obfuscate what is standard and what is IE-specific by interpreting standard code intentionally different and adding their own attributes and elements without providing any clues to developers that this stuff was not actually part of any standard specification.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with prefixing attributes. Mozilla does it, Opera does it, Webkit does it and it makes it perfectly clear to the world which features are standard and which features are not.

Re:Microsoft is right (2)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 2 years ago | (#42019093)

No to mention the fact that if you want to experiment with new features for the inclusion in future versions of the standard, it's kind of hard to do that without implementing them *somehow*, which usually means choosing *some* non-standard (for the time being) selectors. It certainly doesn't mean that web site authors are encouraged them to use these on production web sites.

Re:Microsoft is right (1)

ewanm89 (1052822) | about 2 years ago | (#42019419)

I believe W3C requires a reference implementation before ratifying it for the standard anyway?

Re:Microsoft is right (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019303)

They are supposed to drop the prefixed features once the features are a standard. Using them before they are a standard, is, as you say, fine (and even expected and by design). The real problem is, as it always is, the lazy web developers. Back when sites were "best viewed in Internet Explorer" this wasn't because Internet Explorer was better (far from it). It was because it was near ubiquitous and developers either had too small a budget or were too lazy to implement for other browsers. This is the same thing happening now. Webkit has 90% of the mobile market. Developers are only developing sites for Webkit. Exactly the same as what happened with IE long ago. It was bad then, and is still bad now. It isn't Webkit's fault that the HTML 5 standard has taken about a bazillion years and still isn't 100% done. As long as they implement the final standards without the prefix, they are on solid ground.

Re:Microsoft is right (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019369)

Developers are only developing sites for Webkit.

Bullshit. What we are doing is making use of the webkit extensions and then gracefully degrading for IE. Like we have always done. Webkit is huge in mobile but not on the desktop so there is no way we are only developing for it. That's the stupidest thing I've read all day. The system is working correctly as is and MS are just running their mouths to be doing it. Fucking hypocrites with idiots like you believing their shit.

Re:Microsoft is right (5, Interesting)

nahdude812 (88157) | about 2 years ago | (#42019955)

And nothing says that Microsoft can't translate -webkit- specific prefixes in a compatible manner. Just because it's -webkit-something doesn't mean only Webkit is allowed to use it, but rather that it should be compatible with the Webkit implementation.

A lot of these -webkit- prefixes exist because these are CSS 2 or CSS 3 properties that predated finalization of these standards, and most of them are largely compatible with the final standard if the prefix is removed. Webkit was complying with standards by adding features not yet finalized and prefixing them so there would be no conflict with the final standard. MS is essentially upset that Webkit's presence is sufficiently strong that developers for the first time in many years, don't feel the need to test against Microsoft's platform.

Re:Microsoft is right (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42020185)

Also if they want us to test against IE10 an IE10 mobile they need to provide it for Linux and OSX. I'm not going to get a Windows tablet just for testing.

Besides prefixing indicates unsupported/changing features. Prefixes aren't supposed to be permenant features.

Re:Microsoft is right (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019085)

WebKit is doing exactly what Microsoft accuses it of. They are developing their own extensions and putting them out as webkit- prefixed. Of course Microsoft shouldn't try to implement these non-standard extensions but use the standard ones. This is why I see nothing "funny" or "bizarre" about it, other than for the fact that WebKit is now doing exactly what everyone hated IE doing years ago.

No that is not what webkit is doing. The dominance of webkit AND the reluctance of web developers to include and update the various STANDARD extensions on their websites is what is causing the situation Microsoft is complaining about. And to be clear, it isn't only Microsoft complaining, Opera complained about the exact situation months ago. And there is no web company more standards compliant than Opera. The situation is so bad that Opera has gone to include in its own renderer support for webkit-options because the web developers are too fucking lazy to include the -o- prefix and later update the prefix. So in this battle Microsoft is correct, regardless of what they have done in the past.
Saying "just code to webkit" is preposterous and it negates the benefit of have a standard at all. Having and supporting a standard means you can have different implementations that support that standard. And it doesn't really matter wether the standard is open or closed. Standard means standard. So fucking lazy web developers start updating your websites to respect the STANDARD.

Re:Microsoft is right (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | about 2 years ago | (#42019967)

the web developers are too fucking lazy to include the -o- prefix and later update the prefix

Everybody is implementing both Webkit and Gecko prefixes, because developers won't bother to support ninche browsers. And why would they? It is plenty of work adding specific support for IE, you want them to adapt to several other specificities?

But, once things become standard, developpers should drop the prefix. If they weren't doing that, you could blame them... What, of course isn't happening a lot, because W3C is slow, and it takes ages for things to enter the standard. Sites are rewriten way more often than W3C adds tags into CSS.

Re:Microsoft is right (4, Insightful)

poetmatt (793785) | about 2 years ago | (#42019111)

hahahaha "googlefan1". Nice name.

The reality is webkit is using standard extensions and simply adding their own prefix to identify them, and Microsoft is not. Microsoft breaks the naming conventions entirely. The way IE handles naming conventions is so broken no other browser does so - and it's consistently not well documented. That's not a good thing. So microsoft is accusing them of not following standard extensions? That's beyond hilarious. That's not a pot meet kettle scenario, it's IE complaining that they can't subvert web standards like they have been and continue to attempt to do for years. AKA this is basically them complaining about silverlight not being able to fuck the web more than it has already.

wah wah the world functions without IE, wah wah. That's what this is.

If IE was going to focus on actual standards compliance you'd see their HTML5 compliance higher than webkit browsers offer, and it's not.

Also, why the fuck is this article linking to the comment sections? Slashdot has their own, but usually you'd link to the full article: http://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2012/11/microsoft-begs-web-devs-not-to-make-webkit-the-new-ie6/ [arstechnica.com]

Re:Microsoft is right (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019145)

Best part I like about these same-minute-first-post-MS-rules-Google-sucks trolls is how they're still modded up despite being blatantly obvious.

Hint: webkit- prefixed extensions are not breaking standards (just as well as moz- and ms- prefixed).

Re:Microsoft is right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019173)

The following WebKit-prefixed properties also have the same behavior in Internet Explorer 10 but require Microsoft vendor-prefixing (for example, with the prefix “-ms”) because the corresponding standards have not progressed far enough at the W3C to be unprefixed. You can read more about the Microsoft approach to this process here. Note that while you are adding the “-ms” version, you can also choose to add an unprefixed version to be forward compatible.

Nothing in the "call to action" [windows.com] is complaining about anything. They're just pointing out a practice that they do as well. Inflammatory headline.

Re:Microsoft is right (4, Interesting)

Anubis IV (1279820) | about 2 years ago | (#42019177)

For all of our very valid gripes about IE breaking standards back in the day, their proprietary tags did not directly lead to a stagnation of innovation (the stagnation came from their overwhelming market share), which is what Microsoft has claimed here. Standards weren't moving fast enough, and the back-and-forth between IE and Netscape in the early days led to a lot of innovation and forward movement. The standards just had to catch up afterwards, but it really was better for everyone that the standards were dragged forward, rather than being allowed to hold up progress.

A similar issue is at play here today. The standards aren't moving fast enough to adapt to the growing needs of web developers, so browser developers are being forced to put in ways to do those things as they work together to create a standard. But as most of us who have used -webkit- prefixed CSS know, the prefixed attributes should be treated as betas, since they are designed to be obsolesced after a standard implementation of that feature exists. That's why any developer worth their salt who wanted to use these features has been writing code like...

-webkit-border-radius: 4px;
-moz-border-radius: 4px;
-o-border-radius: 4px;
border-radius: 4px;

...for the last few years, such that they could enjoy the border-radius feature immediately in the browsers where it was available, but their code would gracefully upgrade to newer browsers that implemented the standard version later (quick note: I intentionally chose a simple example, but there are more complicated examples where not all of them would use "4px" or whatever, but that doesn't change the point).

Microsoft is complaining about the lazy developers who only ever wrote -webkit-prefixed code, or else they're complaining about the fact that they never got around to implementing a stand-in feature like this in the meantime, meaning that it's only with their most recent versions that they're finally starting to support features that have been in the other major browsers for a number of years.

Re:Microsoft is right (-1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 2 years ago | (#42020117)

That's why any developer worth their salt who wanted to use these features has been writing code like... -webkit-border-radius: 4px;
-moz-border-radius: 4px;
-o-border-radius: 4px;
border-radius: 4px;

No. Any developer worth their salt would never have allowed that to happen. They would have solved this issue by implementing a standard for beta/reference implementations of new features, and ONLY recommended those browser specific prefixes for browser specific extensions. You want a new feature in your web browser, hope to get it standardized? You propose it formally as such: -ref0-border-radius: 4px Then any browser can implement -ref0-border-radius.

The future browsers would NOT require you to specify both -ref0-border-radius: AND border-radius:. Indeed, the FIRST IMPLEMENTATION of the feature would accept BOTH of these going forward, so that as it becomes standardized there's no need to include both. Newer style sheets would use the border-radius: when they stop supporting outdated browsers that don't support the feature. You might even just talk to different browser makers over a week or so to decide what that new feature should do before running off to code it up. The WC3 can get in on the gig whenever they get around to it. If there's friction, then the other browser dev should name their feature like: -ref1-border-radius:. Early adopting web devs could just use border-radius: to mean the latest reference design of radius borders, or the finalized version. Only when the parameters differ greatly would they select -ref0- or -ref1- to apply to specific implementations. Just look at your example. o_O
border-radius: 4px is all you should have ever needed there. Old browsers will complain anyway so "-moz-border-radius" is stupid. We could have them just warn instead of error if they don't recognize a "-ref-" prefixed style rule.

Furthermore, WHY MAKE CSS A DIFFERENT ENCODING THAN XML? Sure separate the form and function and content (MVC), but you don't need a new encoding (and parser) to do this -- That means more code, and more attack surface. Noobs, everywhere, I swear. Look, I'm not blaming you for having to use this shit, but if we're going to point fingers at dumb-ass developers, let's aim them at the right ones.

I've been waiting for HTML5 for OVER A DECADE (12 years since v4.01). I gave up. Long Live the Internet, but Fuck the Web. Now I make pixel perfect cross platform web applications with actual APPLICATION DEVELOPMENT toolchains (most have code signing too!) instead of trying to shoehorn in application logic atop an inadequate document display language using a horribly designed and inefficient scripting language. You want a web enabled app development platform? USE ONE. That's not a document display program's job. GTK, Qt, Java, various Android / Java / iOS cross compilers, all exist. It actually takes less time to make 6 platform specific apps, than one single HTML browser page supported by them all...

Taking the top down approach to this whole thing? That's how you create an infinite rabbit hole. That didn't work for life, it doesn't work for OS or Compiler design, and it won't work for the web either... What you do is start at the lowest common denominator: Graphics primitives -- Fonts / Glyphs, colors, gradients, rasters, etc. and you define a protocol for their display at a fundamental level. Then you DISTRIBUTE THAT. Then folks would be able to create all sorts of text based (X)HTML or JSON, content encodings that compiles down to these primitives, And presto! Everything is fully fucking controllable and viewable by everyone forever amen.

HEY, KNOW WHAT WOULD BE A GREAT IDEA? INVENT A NEW DOCUMENT DISPLAY FORMAT AND WIND UP RE-INVENTING THE WHEEL! It's like they thought PostScript didn't exist FOR A DECADE PRIOR... I would have just added links and nesting to that and been done. Tim B. Lee. I blame your lack of foresight for the mess that is HTML. If it wasn't meant to be read by users, then it's easy to edit text based encoding shouldn't have mattered, no matter what the Telnet users said (there's still push back against email that's not plain text)... Also, Sun/Oracle: You dropped the ball making Java too bloated for web app development, you could have saved us but you didn't.

Re:Microsoft is right (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019195)

Microsoft is not quite right, or at least Microsoft is not right to lay the blame for this at webkit's feet. And webkit is not doing the same as what Microsoft used to do at all. The fact that web developers are using the "-webkit-" prefixed CSS directives rather than the W3C standardised equivalents, etc., is down to the web developers, not webkit. Prefixing a non-standard CSS directive with "-webkit-" or "-moz-" or "-khtml-" in your browser's CSS engine is absolutely the correct thing to do: it marks out the non-standard directives as such, and easily distinguishes them from the standard ones, which have no such prefix. Typically this was done by conscientious browser vendors to implement proposed CSS standards ahead of their ratification without breaking things if the final ratified standard changed between when the vendor first implemented it and its ratification. It was a very common thing among browsers that cared about keeping up with standards, and was the "approved" way of doing it.

As far as I know webkit supports all nor near-as-dammit all standardised CSS, including cases where it used to provide its own non-standard, prefixed directive for the same functionality prior to that functionality being standardised (for example, "-webkit-border-radius" works in webkit, but so does "border-radius"). Again, the fact that developers continue to use the non-standardised versions is down to them not updating their websites to keep up with the standard, it's not down to webkit not supporting the standard.

What IE used to do was to completely ignore the standards and implement whatever they wanted any way they wanted. So IE would implement a CSS directive that was defined by the W3C standard, but in its own way *without* using the "-ie-" prefix that would have marked it out as a non-standard directive. In other words, they broke the standard. The reason this behaviour was way worse than what webkit does is that, owing to its dominance in the desktop browser market, developers had little choice but to do things the IE way despite what the standard said should happen. In the present situation in the mobile browser market, webkit is not forcing developers to do things their way, they support the standards. That developers don't is down to them and says something about how much pressure their work time is under (or how lazy they are), but says little to nothing about webkit abusing its dominant position. The worst you can say about webkit is that possibly they are being slow to remove support for the non-standard versions of CSS directives that have since been standardised. But only possibly, and I personally don't think this is the case.

So sure, Microsoft is right, it should not try to implement anything with a "-webkit-" prefix, or any other non-standard prefix for that matter. But the reason this is an issue is not down to webkit and trying to blame webkit for it is disingenuous. It's bizarre because for Microsoft to be claiming this is massively hypocritical. It's funny because the chickens are coming home to roost and it's always funny to see the bully with egg on his face.

Re:Microsoft is right (1)

hcs_$reboot (1536101) | about 2 years ago | (#42019197)

They are developing their own extensions and putting them out as webkit- prefixed (...) WebKit is now doing exactly what everyone hated IE doing years ago

Using prefixes would have been less of a problem: Microsoft implemented wrongly standard css rules (compared to the w3c recommendations). Would they have used prefixes, we could have avoided them, but when basic rules ("margin", "padding", "border") are buggy, that's another story.

Re:Microsoft is right (4, Insightful)

LordThyGod (1465887) | about 2 years ago | (#42019261)

Informative? GMAFB. They are not "developing their own extensions", they coming out ahead of the curve in implementing new features that MS can't be bothered with most of the time. The vendor extensions are an established method of doing this. In fact, MS has the ms- extension they use for just the same situations (its just they don't have as many opportunities to use it since they continually lag so far behind all the competition). And MS never did anything like this years ago. Never. What they did was either outright ignore standards, create their own standards, and implement deliberately buggy implementations that saddled their ignorant user base with for years. What MS was doing was deliberately disrupting web tehchologies in a negative way to slow the adaption of new technologies since their income was all tied to desktops. And deliberately so. What -webkit is doing, is advancing technology. Two ends of the spectrum.

Re:Microsoft is right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019703)

Jesus Christ will you MS shills fuck off already?

Re:Microsoft is right (5, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | about 2 years ago | (#42019787)

No, this isn't exactly what Microsoft did. The meaning and purpose behind putting "webkit-" in there is to prevent it from being misunderstood as a standard.

Unfortunately, as developers did with Microsoft, was that they deployed techniques which were not standards. In Microsoft's case, they did not announce in any way that "this is Microsoft only." In the case of Webkit, it's pretty darned obvious.

Webkit did what they could while also allowing developers to test and play with the added features. It is the developers who broke the rules by using the Webkit extensions.

Of course, the irony is delicious. This is a reversal of something which Microsoft took heavy advantage for many, many years. It doesn't make it right, but the blame isn't on Webkit for implementing those things. It did, in my opinion, the best thing to ensure that developers were aware that the things they were doing were webkit specific. Additionally, if there were any web development tools which deployed webkit specific functions without informing the developer in some way (such as "enable webkit specific functions? (y/n)") then they share some of the blame.

Microsoft did the same, but worse. Webkit remains obvious and open. Once a feature becomes a standard, the webkit- is removed and simply given the name. I have seen this already. But the process is really, really slow. And that's a big part of the problem. Developers don't want really really slow adoption of standards. They want to make the best, most eye-popping and exciting pages for their clients and for users to experience.

Re:Microsoft is right (1)

sgunhouse (1050564) | about 2 years ago | (#42019833)

Webkit really has a 90% share? I thought that was Opera, which even works on a number of non-"smart" phones. However ...

People have complained that Opera felt it was necessary to support the -webkit- prefixed attributes in their browsers (desktop, mobile and "mini"). To be fair they also support -gecko- prefixed attributes and un-prefixed, the complaint was that Opera supporting -webkit- attributes left developers with little reason to fix their sites. Unfortunately Opera doesn't have that much clout.

In that sense, I'll say that it is good for MS to get onto the standards bandwagon for a change; maybe we really can get mobile site designers to support standards now.

Re:Microsoft is right (2)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | about 2 years ago | (#42019835)

No, every single browser has it's own prefixed extension for their current implementation of some functionality. Webkit uses webkit-, firefox is moz-, IE is ms- and opera is o-.

The issue is only that developers know full well that webkit, thanks to it being open source, has become the largest rendered around. Mac, iOS, Android and Chrome all use it so if the developer is lazy they will only use the webkit- extension. But many use both moz and webkit. No one really cares about IE because it is stil behind the rest and actually Microsoft pissed off a lot of web designers and developers with IE and MS expects to be forgiven straight away and get people to invest time in supporting their latest and greatest browser and its tiny market share.

I do try to do the right thing but I don't blame people for not caring. Microsoft still don't care about standards. OOXML and webgl prove that. They're just the least relevant company in mobile devices and they don't like being the loser. Fortunately for them webkit is open source so they could use it if they want.

Re:Microsoft is right (1)

StripedCow (776465) | about 2 years ago | (#42019987)

Web standards are becoming too complicated to reliably support across a range of operating systems and devices. And this is just another symptom of that.

In fact, the probability that a program written now actually works when the user opens it is much lower now than it was before the web era. Is that progress?
I'm not sure.

Actually, I think we should ditch these complicated standards for a much more simple and concise standard. Because as we all know, one can build complicated things using only a few simple primitives. The primitives we have now in HTML5 and javascript are far from simple, and thus shouldn't actually be called "primitives".

Why actually is HTML so complicated? Because it was made for laymen, not for professionals. And also because W3C wanted to support a semantic web, something which actually should be pursued in an entirely different way (using AI like google does, instead of by requiring developers to mark up everything with semantic info, mixing meaning and layout, that is simply too much to ask).

Those two reasons gave us, from the developer's point of view, the messed up web we have now. Time to rewind it, I would say.

Browser Specific Code (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019005)

You know this was an issue ten years ago when i was learning Perl and the hot new PHP 3...one might have hoped for a little progress in the interim.

Re:Browser Specific Code (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about 2 years ago | (#42019831)

ProTip: Perl and PHP don't run in the browser. They didn't ten years ago, either.

Re:Browser Specific Code (1)

the_B0fh (208483) | about 2 years ago | (#42020161)

Maybe that's why he hasn't had as much success as he'd hope for? 10 years is a pretty long time to be learning perl and php and not get anywhere...

Open Platform (5, Insightful)

Nerdfest (867930) | about 2 years ago | (#42019021)

Don't blame Android as a platform, it actually allows non-WebKit browsers.

I have an idea... (4, Interesting)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about 2 years ago | (#42019037)

Why don't they use webkit themselves? Then they can spend their time, money, and energy on putting their crappy microsoft experience on top of it?

Sorry... using logic again.

Re:I have an idea... (2)

Nerdfest (867930) | about 2 years ago | (#42019083)

I like competing browsers, but I like also like standards. The trick is that the standards communities need to realize that they have to move faster. Really, as long as the WebKit community doesn't start patenting any of the extensions and other browser's developers pick them up (and vice-versa), we should be okay for a while.

Re:I have an idea... (1, Insightful)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 2 years ago | (#42019091)

Why don't they use Linux for Linux? Why doesn't Ford use GM designs?

Diversity is a good thing. Everything-webkit is nearly as bas as everything-IE

Diversity = Proprietary Lock-in (2, Insightful)

tuppe666 (904118) | about 2 years ago | (#42019273)

Diversity is a good thing. Everything-webkit is nearly as bas as everything-IE

I have seen this desperate post, a few times from Microsoft Shills unfortunately, your arguing against using a open standards complement browser...and one Microsoft can actively contribute to, to ensure standards vs changing to proprietary vendor who routinely uses lock-in. That seems so smart.

The bottom line in advocating locking yourself into a proprietary standard over a open standard going forward is exactly the opposite of diversity.

Re:Diversity = Proprietary Lock-in (2)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about 2 years ago | (#42019325)

I do think Diversity is a good thing... but maybe not in web browser engines. The whole point of the web is for it work anywhere and MS has never quite grokked that.

Re:I have an idea... (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 2 years ago | (#42019327)

Why doesn't Ford use GM designs?

Because they'd be seen as non-innovative. Cars aren't allowed design patents. Neither is clothing. Thus, you see many varied designs in clothing, and in car designs. However, the mechanical processes can be patented. That's why I had to buy a GM back door latching mechanism to replace my neighbor's Mazda door latch -- They were identical because they came from the same place. They weren't different, or innovative...

TL;DR: Because they must innovate since they're not allowed patents. Patents stifle innovation.

Re:I have an idea... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019457)

Because they'd be seen as non-innovative. Cars aren't allowed design patents. Neither is clothing. Thus, you see many varied designs in clothing, and in car designs. However, the mechanical processes can be patented. That's why I had to buy a GM back door latching mechanism to replace my neighbor's Mazda door latch -- They were identical because they came from the same place. They weren't different, or innovative...

Interestingly enough, Mazda had a long-standing partnership with Ford. They often built and sold the same car under different names.

I don't know that GM had such a relationship with Mazda, but I know they did with Izuzu and Suzkui, and of course NUMMI.

Then again, they might have both bought that Mechanism from the same third-party supplier.

Re:I have an idea... (1)

Missing.Matter (1845576) | about 2 years ago | (#42019159)

What exactly is the point of a standard then, if everyone is forced to use the same rendering engine?

Re:I have an idea... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019411)

Are you stupid? Nobody said anything about forcing MS to use webkit. Not to mention that gecko and presto engines don't seem to be having any problems coding to the standard. Of course they don't have a vested interest in slowing web technologies to the behest of preserving a certain desktop monopoly. Oh, did I say that out loud?

Re:I have an idea... (1)

gnasher719 (869701) | about 2 years ago | (#42019183)

Why don't they use webkit themselves? Then they can spend their time, money, and energy on putting their crappy microsoft experience on top of it?

Apart from the snarkyness at the end, this is actually a very good question. Webkit source is available as open source in a form that can be used by proprietary applications, and since Safari runs on Windows I suppose there is already a version out there that could be put directly into a Microsoft-created browser. The only "disadvantage" is that any improvements by Microsoft could be picked up by Apple to improve Safari. And since Webkit works already on iOS and Android, I suppose it is quite portable and making it work on Windows 8 shouldn't be too difficult.

This should come as no surprise (4, Funny)

Arancaytar (966377) | about 2 years ago | (#42019045)

Because if there is one company that really stands up for standards, it's Microsoft.

In fact, sometimes they pay millions to get them through the ISO.

Re:This should come as no surprise (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019141)

Because if there is one company that really stands up for standards, it's Microsoft.

In fact, sometimes they pay millions to get them through the ISO.

That is funny and all. It still doesn't change that for mobile web we are in process of repeating the "only works right in IE6" disaster, just that it is now "only works right in webkit". Doesn't matter what you think of webkit, or Microsoft, locking in on a single browser outside of standards is not a good thing.

Re:This should come as no surprise (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019277)

No, you got it all wrong. The prefixes are actually preventing the IE6 disaster to be repeated

Re:This should come as no surprise (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019315)

It still doesn't change that for mobile web we are in process of repeating the "only works right in IE6" disaster

Bullshit. The webkit prefix is to test proposed parts of CSS that haven't been fully ratified yet. With IE6, Microsoft took the standard and designed internet explorer to exhibit non-standard behavior. With webkit, things are working the way they should, with the yarn MS is spinning here, you get the former bully with fresh egg on its face being the consummate hypocrite.

Do people still test against IE? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019351)

Sorry, but I made a conscious decision NOT to make it work for IE. I found I just don't care if it works. For about 6 years now, I've only tested against Firefox.

Does it work with IE? Who knows! Who cares! Not me. Not my customers, I have to support Android and iOS, not WinCE 6, or Windows Phone 7 or Windows 8 Metro Phone Edition Delux. I mean FFS, if they won't back their own mobile standards why would me or my customers back it for them??

I wouldn't use the Webkit extensions though, as soon as (if) they get ratified, they get deprecated on the next release, and eventually unsupported.

Re:Do people still test against IE? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42020065)

Sorry, but I made a conscious decision NOT to make it work for IE..

Ah memories!, specifically of a drunken night (circa 10th June 1995) where, after getting rather PO'd about complaints about how the site 'didn't look good in IE' I wrote a script which marquee tagged every fscking letter on our fledgeling web server to scroll in random up, downs, lefts and rights at varying randomised scrollamounts and scrolldelays..then went back to the pub crawl for the rest of the weekend.

To say the following Monday morning was a fun experience, is a bit of an understatement..my argument of 'hey, the page looks ok in Netscape' went down like the proverbial balloon made of the stuff with atomic number 82.

Pot the Kettle: You are Black (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019065)

This is rich coming from Redmond, Microsoft is breaking web standards with IE 6, IE 7, IE 8, and IE 9.

Let them fix the beam in their own eye, before they start complaining about the speck in anothers.

MS has a point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019219)

Webkit's a pot calling a kettle black. MS does it = bad. Webkit does = ok? Double-Standards "do as I say, not as I do" b.s.'s what I am seeing.

Re:MS has a point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019449)

Pay attention, stupid. The webkit prefix is to test proposed parts of CSS that haven't been fully ratified yet. With IE6, Microsoft took the standard and designed internet explorer to exhibit non-standard behavior. With webkit, things are working the way they should, with the yarn MS is spinning here, you get the former bully with fresh egg on its face being the consummate hypocrite.

Re:MS has a point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019677)

Still pot calling a kettle black and no way around it.

Re:MS has a point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019767)

I'm sorry you are so offended by objective reality that you insist on substituting your own twisted version. That's pretty sad.

Best Viewed in (0)

Frankie70 (803801) | about 2 years ago | (#42019117)

When can we start seeing the "Best seen in Webkit" logos?

Pot, meet kettle (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 2 years ago | (#42019155)

...wow. That is all I can say. "Wow."

Why does IE10 still suck? (2)

Rossman (593924) | about 2 years ago | (#42019157)

The real question is, how does IE10 still score so poorly on html5test.com...a sad 320 (+6 bonus) vs. Firefox's 372 (+10 bonus).

It seems insane to me that MS is still this far behind.

IE7 != final on Win7 yet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019269)

Give it time. It's better than IE9 & not "fully baked" yet.

Sorry - correction: IE10 != final on Win7 yet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019283)

Re:Sorry - correction: IE10 != final on Win7 yet (1)

Rossman (593924) | about 2 years ago | (#42019981)

I ran the test with IE10 on Windows 8 Pro (release version). I'm not sure how much more "final" it can be?

Re:Why does IE10 still suck? (1)

msauve (701917) | about 2 years ago | (#42019287)

Then the question becomes, how does Firefox do so poorly - a disappointing 372+10 vs. Opera's 419+9 or Chrome's 448+13.

Wasn't Firefox really popular once?

Re:Why does IE10 still suck? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019475)

Every single tag like "input type=month" and "input type=day" is a single point of the score. Firefox supports none of the aforementioned so gets a lot of points deducted. Just try out the compare-tab to find out where firefox falls behind in that test. (posting with chromium 25.0.1330.0, scoring 463+9)

Re:Why does IE10 still suck? (2)

Rossman (593924) | about 2 years ago | (#42020003)

While this is a fair point, I chose to compare IE to FF because Microsoft is a massive corporation with nearly unlimited funds to solve this problem, and Mozilla is not.

With their resources they should be able to match or even outdo a browser like Chrome (another browser with a boatload of dough behind it). There's really no excuse at this point.

I agree in part (1)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | about 2 years ago | (#42019161)

For some stuff this is no different than what Microsoft did with IE, but that doesn't mean this should be the appoach taken. Microsoft could also be less of a drag when it comes to embracing the web specifications.

The web specifications need to flow a little better and ease the rate of implementation. At the same time we should be discouraging the use of prefixed extensions and encourage the use of their non-prefixed equivalents, if they are part of that year's spécification.

As for the idea of simply using WebKit, it is one approach, but at the same time it is nice to see the diversity of implentations to keep people competitive.

Re:I agree in part (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019483)

This must be the day for schooling clueless idiots so pay attention, stupid. The webkit prefix is to test proposed parts of CSS that haven't been fully ratified yet. With IE6, Microsoft took the standard and designed internet explorer to exhibit non-standard behavior. With webkit, things are working the way they should, with the yarn MS is spinning here, you get the former bully with fresh egg on its face being the consummate hypocrite.

MS is the GOP of software companies. (-1, Troll)

mark_reh (2015546) | about 2 years ago | (#42019179)

MS is the GOP of software companies.

Re:MS is the GOP of software companies. (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about 2 years ago | (#42019757)

Are you saying that because you think democrats are not hypocritical? Please think that, because that will entertain me.

Biased much? (5, Insightful)

Redbaran (918344) | about 2 years ago | (#42019185)

It shouldn't come as a surprise that a summary written by "Billy Gates" would be this slanted... I read the MS blog and I didn't see anything that ruffled my feathers. Don't get me wrong, I still have a bad taste in my mouth from the IE6 days, but all the blog post is doing is saying is "don't make your site webkit specific". This is good advice not because of IE, but because there are still other browsers out there such as Opera Mobile.

In fact, MS blog post specifically states: "Now, it’s very easy to adapt a WebKit-optimized site to also support IE10." See that keyword I emphasized, it means they aren't telling people to abandon webkit. The examples they provide back that up as they leave webkit support in place and add either the non-prefixed standards compliant property or when that's not available, add the IE specific property alongside the webkit one.

As a side note, I take a site like this much less seriously when it stoops to the same level of bipartisan drivel and mud slinging that we all had to endure for the last six months with the US elections.

Opera to support webkit prefixes, though (1)

QuasiSteve (2042606) | about 2 years ago | (#42019441)

True, but Opera - and Mozilla - were/are planning to, or already do, just support the -webkit prefixes in order to stay relevant in an increasingly this-site-best-rendered-using-webkit mobile era;
http://tech.slashdot.org/story/12/05/09/1310255/w3c-member-proposes-fix-for-css-prefix-problem [slashdot.org]

I don't know if they have since decided against that, but if not... -webkit prefixes to be had for all!

Really, MSFT is right here. But being right is only 1/10th the battle.

Re:Biased much? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019521)

As a side note, I take a site like this much less seriously when it stoops to the same level of bipartisan drivel and mud slinging that we all had to endure for the last six months with the US elections.

Drivel this, bitch. Come talk when the majority of Windows computers in production can even install IE10. Microsoft does it again. Talking out of both sides of their foul mouths and then the drones like you come to back their shit up. Maybe you don't like this site because we see through your bullshit. Ever thought about that?

Seriously (2)

Murdoch5 (1563847) | about 2 years ago | (#42019213)

This coming from the same company which make a browser that doesn't adopt proper CSS or HTML? How about they fix IE to work correctly with CSS and then come back and say this.

Misinforming, as usual (5, Informative)

gaspyy (514539) | about 2 years ago | (#42019245)

Man, I don't know why I even bother to visit Slashdot these days. Everything is so much misinformation that you're wiser not reading anything.

If anything, this post is like the one from yesterday about rooting the Nexus 4 phone.

Here's the deal: Some CSS properties, before becoming standard, have vendor-specific prefixes, like -moz, -webkit, -ms and -o. Sometimes their syntax is different (for example with gradients), or things like border-radius-top-left vs border-top-left-radius. As they become standardized. the prefix is dropped.

Now, MS is advising developers to include the W3C-standard property name instead of (or in addition to) the vendor-specific one.

To give a simple example, MS supports the W3C standard border-radius, but if the developer only targets -webkit-border-radius, it will work only in webkit. BTW, webkit also supports W3C border-radius, so there's currently no reason to use the prefix, at least on this property.

Re:Misinforming, as usual (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019621)

You're right, the original MS blog post does not seem to have the "irony" that the ./ summary is implying. IE10 is great, and I think the web community should be welcoming towards Microsoft now that they finally begun working with common standards. What comes to the submitter commenting that MS should adopt Webkit, I think it's b*llshit. The very purpose of standards is that they are implementation-neutral, so manufacturers don't need to utilize any one specific codebase (be it commercial, open-source, Free, and/or public domain) in order to be universally compliant as long as they follow the standard spec.

Essentially, what MS is doing is pitching for vendor neutrality, which is a really GOOD thing, and Mozilla and Opera [change.org] are on the same boat with them.

IE is IrrElevant (1, Insightful)

pubwvj (1045960) | about 2 years ago | (#42019293)

I stopped testing against IE six years ago. Microsoft breaks too many rules to bother trying to be compatible with them. When users hit problems with IE on my web sites I tell them to get a different browser like Safari, FireFox or Opera. After over a decade of dealing with Microsoft's arrogance I decided it wasn't worth it. If users want my content they either need to get a real browser or put up with the problems IE delivers to them.

border-radius (1)

Bigbutt (65939) | about 2 years ago | (#42019329)

Well, it only works with IE9 and higher anyway and the -moz-radius-border doesn't work on newer Firefox distros any more. So now I have three border-radius entries plus the pre-IE9 hack.

border-radius: 10px;
-moz-border-radius: 10px;
-webkit-border-radius:10px;

[John]

Re:border-radius (1)

John Hasler (414242) | about 2 years ago | (#42019425)

So don't use "radius-border" at all. It's just a trivial frill.

"proprietary (yet open source)" (1)

John Hasler (414242) | about 2 years ago | (#42019371)

You contradict yourself.

Can't an alias fix that ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019377)

So, if I get that correctly :
1. Sometime ago, -radius-border wasn't a standart.
2. Webkit implemented it, and prefixed it as : -WebKit-radius-border.
3. More recently, -radius-border became part of W3C standart.
4. Some (lots of ?) people didn't bother renaming -Webkit-radius-border as -radius-border.

Point 4. is pretty much expected, and is not going away for some time.
Now, why IE, as it supports -radius-border, doesn't create an alias for -WebKit-radius-border that makes a call to its W3C compliant -radius-border implementation ?

Re:Can't an alias fix that ? (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about 2 years ago | (#42020195)

Now, why IE, as it supports -radius-border, doesn't create an alias for -WebKit-radius-border that makes a call to its W3C compliant -radius-border implementation ?

Because it is part neither of the spec nor of the -ms IE namespace?

The IE folks (quite understandably) do not want to go there, and you should not want them to.

Not sure if this is a problem (4, Interesting)

fermion (181285) | about 2 years ago | (#42019433)

So, how much does this effect things overall? There has often been specific tags that can cause a problem. For instance, there is HTML editing interfaces that only work fully in firefox, but works ok on everything else.

The funny thing is that MS pushed this type of non standard HTML by convincing web developers that it was more important to HTML to create consistant application interfaces rather than flexible content delivery and sales interface technology. So they pushed the idea of fixed screen sizes, fixed elements, and the like that only IE could, at the time, deliver. CSS and HTML5 depreciated the IE technology, but the damage was done. A generation of web developers were trained to look at web pages as fixed entities, not flexible markups. Even today I have to use some web pages that will only on IE because MS has convinced the MBAs that this is the most efficient way to do things.

So now we are at a place where Webkit and Gecko rule the world. Designers are writing web pages to work well on Chrome, Firefox, and Android, which fortunately for apple will make it work on Mac and iOS as well. MS, being the entitled rich kid, is whining that consumers are ignoring IE. Of course IE is being ignored. It is doesn't run on anything that consumers choose to use. The only people who use IE are corporate types that are forced to use IE. If I have a new social app, am I going to cate that it does not run on IE. No, I am going to care that it does not run Android. If MS wants it to run on IE, they have the resources to add the functionality to IE. Otherwise who cares?

Thank goodness MS doesn't use WebKit. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42019599)

We need diversity and variety. Everyone else has thrown in the towel and just blindly adopted WebKit. This is a dangerous trend for security and stifles innovation. Thankfully one company still has the guts to implement their own standards-based HTML engine.

Don't blame the browsers (4, Interesting)

FyberOptic (813904) | about 2 years ago | (#42019667)

I wish people would stop offering the "well Microsoft used to do this so who are they to complain" excuse. Not only is the internet a different place, but so is Microsoft. They tried very hard to become as standards-compliant as they are now, and it took the risk of breaking existing websites along the way, despite the compatibility mode they offered. But the fact is, they made that decision. I still don't care about using IE, but I still give credit where credit is due.

Where the problem lies is mostly with the W3C. This is who we should be blaming. This is 2012, and all that ever happens with these people is bickering and squabbling, while the web still stagnates with a technology level of five years ago, and couldn't even decide on a standard for something as basic as rounded corners. This is the Achilles' Heel of the free software world, where everything is treated far too much as a democracy, so every nerd with an over-inflated ego has an idea for how something should be done and they're absolutely certain that theirs is the best way to do it. It not only results in the dozens and dozens of forks of major pieces of software in the free software community, but also results in any kind of standards decisions being delayed for literally years while everyone acts like babies instead of ratifying something already.

I can remember almost ten years ago when I was developing a very graphics-oriented website, and part of what I was being asked to do was to rotate a section of the page by 90 degrees. Except the content on this area was dynamic, containing an avatar and the user's name and stuff. There was no web standard for doing something like this at all, and my only option was going to be using Flash. But since Flash was prone to not line up perfectly among every browser (and I needed pixel-perfect alignment), not to mention was overkill for what I needed, even that was a problem. So eventually, after looking at our statistics, a good 98+% of the users used IE. The rest was Opera or Safari. So I made the decision to implement IE's proprietary DirectX filter extension, which allowed rotation of any HTML object in the page, and would apply this to any content normally inside of this object as well. The resulting effect was excellent.

Over time, I wasn't entirely satisfied with this single-browser solution (which had something to do with the fact that I'd switched to Opera myself!). But web technology still never caught up. So my way around this was to generate this section of the website on the server itself, using Perl and the GD library. I cached the resulting image for every user, only regenerating it when they changed their icon or any of their information. I was able to recreate the original DirectX filter version with 99% accuracy this way. But this was all only because our web host had been kind enough to install GD for me to begin with, since this was before we were running our own server.

The point of this story is, the ability to rotate components in a DOM tree has only recently become possible in HTML5. And HTML5 is still unfinished! Expect to see plenty more browser-dependent extensions over the decade, just like what happened last decade, all because the organization we rely on to give us these standards is dragging its heels and arguing every detail along the way.

NEVER TRUST MS (1, Troll)

bussdriver (620565) | about 2 years ago | (#42019977)

MS used IE to harm the web, on purpose to protect their monopoly. Their only interest is their monopoly power. I don't care if they woke up and are investing millions to catch back up again and I don't care if IE 11 is the best browser in history.

MS will embrace and extend to attack the web as it threatens their interests; if they ever end up in a dominant position again they will resume the attack.

Re:NEVER TRUST MS (2, Insightful)

FyberOptic (813904) | about 2 years ago | (#42020031)

What some people saw as Microsoft trying to monopolize the web, the rest of us saw as them finding solutions to problems that nobody else offered.

The DirectX filter I mentioned? That was the only way to rotate web page content for a decade. And that was just the tip of the iceberg of its capabilities.

Re:Don't blame the browsers (2)

marcosdumay (620877) | about 2 years ago | (#42020047)

(and I needed pixel-perfect alignment)

That. Why do web developers need pixel-perfect alignment so often? I've never seen a web user needing it.

Do the clients demand it? Is it because the clients come from the printed world? Is it because they don't understand usability? Or is it a problem that the development community created themselves?

"They can't break web standards!" (1)

Chris Mattern (191822) | about 2 years ago | (#42019929)

"We're the only ones who get to do that!"

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