IE7 Beta 2 is Out!

Tue 31 Jan 2006 6:26pm

Well, I almost installed the newly released Internet Explorer 7 Beta 2. Luckily, I found out just in time from the comments on a post on the IE blog that it will install over my IE6 and not uninstall. Since I need IE6 for web dev work, I can’t install it at this point, which means that I can’t try it out. I’m disappointed, but I can still read other people’s comments about the beta release.

EDIT: Apparently it can be uninstalled, based on a new post from the IE blog. I was grossly misinformed.

I’m still torn about the new IE and CSS. On the one hand, initial comments from some people make it sound as if they’ve only fixed a few CSS bugs and left other big ones (multiple-class bug, absolute positioning bug, margin bug) unfixed. This isn’t very encouraging. However, it’s only a beta release, so maybe things will continue to improve in the final release. I’m encouraged by the tone of this post by Chris Wilson on the IE Blog. They are looking for feedback; they are at least trying to fix the problem. Dean’s comment on my previous post is also encouraging. I’m no longer suspicious of the IE team’s intent, but I’m still afraid that they may not be given enough time and freedom by their superiors to fix all the bugs that need fixing in the browser. Corporate higher-ups only need another browser release to boost market-share and awareness. As long as they include enough commonly know buzzwords, they don’t need to worry about little things like CSS2.1 compatibility.

I appreciated Fred’s post at WeBreakStuff about his recent visit to Microsoft. He claims that they’re not as evil as they seem, and that, large as the company is, there are people inside it working to move it in the right directions. Good. As Ben Parker once said in a movie, “With great power comes great responsibility.”

I seriously wish the IE Team the best, and encourage them to keep working on standards-compliance. I’ll work with you guys if you work with me. You have the power to make web dev less of a headache. Go, fight win!

Comments (4 So Far)

IE 7 Beta 2: Resources by Elliott Back says:
Tue 31 Jan 2006 - 9:32pm

[…] Sean MCB has a few thoughts on the new beta […]

Sean says:
Fri 3 Feb 2006 - 4:49pm

Just a little while since the beta preview release and already there are sites dedicated to IE7 CSS bugs. Great! Some of these things weren’t even problems in IE6, which is strange, but I’m sure they’ll be fixed by the final release.

IEBlog also has a new post specifically detailing what’s new for CSS in IE7 Beta 2 Preview.

Jeff Powell says:
Mon 6 Feb 2006 - 4:27am

Sean, Can you honestly say that you actually care that IE7’s new beta is out? Lke yourself, I live on the web and make my living designing sites professionally but after Microsoft swoop in from nowhere and devour the browser market, only to then let it wither on the vine for the last 5+ years without doing nearly a thing. All the while, upstarts and innovative alternatives continued to drive the pace forward with new features and far better security (for those still using Windows).

I was a huge IE fan in it’s day as it was the best browser on the market — and ironically it hasn’t changed hardly at all in since I used to use it. Sure, for mom and pop, it’s all they know or need — but for people like us who literally build the web, IE is a complete pain in the ass, especially when you build standards compliant sites. Anyway, I just found it interesting that someone was actually excited about the new beta. Most people are finding it hard to get too jazzed about “Hey look, Microsoft finally got around to taking all those good ideas that the other browser makers have come up with since the last time they updated IE and rolled them into a new version! Oooohh, Ahhhh…” It’s only a matter of time before we get to hear the masses claim how MS is once again this innovative, nimble company - just look, they invetned Tabbed Browsing, RSS, OPML and possibly even Podcasting!

All kidding aside, given the unbeliveable resource that they have availabel to them, its almost criminal how little they actual have to show for thier billions of R&D dollars annual comapred to far smaller entities who utterly trounce them when it comes to innovation. But I digress, why innovate (that’s the hard part!) when you can just back, enjoy your monopoly, and then cherry pick the best technologies once they already have traction in the marketplace. It’s working for Google and Yahoo picking up some nice little acquisition like Flickr,, etc.

Anyway - enjoy that beta!

Sean says:
Mon 6 Feb 2006 - 1:44pm


I think you misunderstand me. I’m not PERSONALLY excited about the beta at all. I’d sooner bath in warm maggots than switch back to IE for my personal browsing needs.

However, the fact remains that the general public who CONSUMES the web that we build mostly uses IE. So, I’m excited (or perhaps more accurately, interested) in the new version of IE only because of its potential to make things much easier or much more difficult for me as a developer.

I know that IE isn’t innovating at all. I don’t really care. All I want is decent CSS2 compatibility so that my headaches as a designer can subside.

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Sean McBride
Engineer / Web Developer
Boston, MA - Billings, MT

"Work, friends, sleep ... choose any 2."

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